Letter: RCMP offer back to school traffic safety tips

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Morinville RCMP would like to remind the community to exercise extra caution as students in Morinville and throughout Sturgeon County head back to school on Sept. 3. Morinville RCMP along with the Morinville Bylaw and Sturgeon County bylaw will be in school zones starting next week and throughout the school year in order to ensure that drivers are observing the posted school zone speed limit.

The speed limit in both urban and rural school zones is 30 km/ hr, unless otherwise posted and is in effect on school days from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. unless other times are posted. The speed limit in a playground zone is 30 km /hr unless otherwise posted and is in effect from 8:30 a.m. to one hour after sunset.

A vehicle is not permitted to pass another vehicle travelling in the same direction in either school or playground zones during the times that these zones are in effect.

Motorists are reminded to stay well back of school busses with their lights activated as children will be entering or exiting the bus and crossing the street. Parents are encouraged to drop their children off in designated drop off / pick up areas.

Did you know that motor vehicle collisions are the number one cause of injury and death among children? Teaching your children about traffic and pedestrian safety will help them stay safe on the roads.

Morinville RCMP encourages all drivers to use extra care when driving in a school / playground zone as children can be unpredictable in their actions and might not understand the danger posed by oncoming traffic. As well, a very safe and successful school year to all students in Morinville and Sturgeon County.

Constable Yelena Avoine

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2 Comments

  1. Just so I am clear on this (as most of the bylaws in Morinville are clear as mud!) Is there a distinction between “school zone” and “playgound zone” locations?? Seeing as how there is a playground at each school, what rules apply? I see the yellow/ green caution signs with outlines of kids with books at school zones. Does this apply only to school zones or does it also encompass the adjoining playground, thereby changing the times listed above in the article? Cars are parked all over school zones and it is terrifying to think of a small child running out from between them. However, in the summer, at 7 or 8 at night, I fully expect the photo radar contractor to be slinking around near the school playgrounds snapping away and the courts interpreting another grey area in the laws to boost the coffers! So, how do we find out which areas are which and which rules pertain to each location? Perhaps the town could put a colour coded map on their new website to clear this up? It’s very easy to follow all the rules if you know what the rules are!

  2. There are a lot of people who aren’t sure about the difference between playground zones and school zones, where they are and when they apply.

    First, the legislation around which zone can be in certain locations is not a local bylaw (Which indeed can be confusing) but is actually a Provincial Act.

    I will provide you with a link that provides detailed information, as put out by the Government of Alberta (GoA). Now the document is very detailed but it will contain all of the information that you are asking about. That link is: http://www.transportation.alberta.ca/Content/docType233/Production/schlpgnd.pdf

    The following link is the Class 5 driver’s manual. While it isn’t as detailed, it also shows pictures of what the two signs look like and when they are in effect. That link is: http://www.transportation.alberta.ca/733.htm

    I hope that these help answer the questions that you have!

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