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Motorists urged to drive carefully as students head back to school this fall

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Cassville Police Chief Dana Kammerlohr urges area motorists to use extra caution on local roadways as students head back to classes this week.

"The Cassville Police Department will increase patrol in school zones and will be running radar," said Kammerlohr. "We want drivers to be extremely cautious in the area of school zones and as always obey the traffic laws for safety reasons."

In addition to building and maintaining roads and bridges, the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) works with the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety to promote driving and pedestrian safety.

MoDOT has issued the following back-to-school safe driving reminders for drivers:

* Expect heavy traffic around schools, with cars dropping off students in the morning and picking them up in the afternoon. Parents behind the wheel may be distracted.

* Expect students walking and riding bicycles to and from school or waiting at school bus stops. Be prepared to slow down and stop at marked locations.

* Expect school buses starting and stopping and traveling slowly each morning and afternoon. Stop when a bus has its red flashing lights activated and the stop sign extended.

* Slow down where speed limits are reduced in school zones, including where flashing lights are installed.

The following tips apply to students:

* Use sidewalks where available. If children must walk in the street, walk single-file facing traffic and stay close to the edge of the road.

* Cross streets only at intersections. Don't dart into traffic from between cars.

* Walk, don't run. Look both ways. Assume drivers cannot see pedestrians.

* Don't walk distracted. Focus on traffic. Avoid using cell phones, ear buds and hand-held games.

* Obey signs and signals.

* When disembarking from a school bus, look both ways before walking in front of the bus and into the street in case an approaching car does not stop. Don't "go back" to retrieve dropped or forgotten items.

* When crossing the street, in a crosswalk or a corner, wait until all cars, in all lanes and in both directions, are stopped before stepping out.

* In bad weather, with slick or wet pavement, expect cars to take a longer distance to stop.

* At night, carry a flashlight and use light clothing with reflective strips to be visible to motorists.

For more information on pedestrian and bus safety, visit www.saveMolives.com.



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