Alberta RCMP offer back-to-school traffic safety tips and urge caution over long weekend

by Morinville News Staff

Alberta RCMP expects increased traffic as people return from holidays and school buses start their regular routes one again. They are urging motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians to use caution.

“With children returning to school, it’s important for drivers and pedestrians to be extra cautious and to respect the rules of the road,” said Supt. Rick Gardner, Alberta Traffic Sheriffs, in an Aug. 29 media release. “Everyone must be mindful of bus and crosswalk safety and understand the expectations within school zones.”

Alberta Traffic Services Superintendent Gary Graham said Alberta RCMP responded to 354 motor vehicle collisions last Labour Day weekend. Those collisions resulted in four fatalities and 44 injuries. “Traffic safety is a shared responsibility,” he said. “This long weekend, when you’re on the road, always follow the posted speed limit and never operate a vehicle while under the influence of drugs, alcohol or while fatigued.”

Alberta RCMP urges drivers to practice the following back-to-school season tips to set a good example for traffic safety.

All road users: It is imperative that you are aware of your surroundings at all times to focus on the road and take appropriate actions to avoid a potential collision.

Students: Only cross at designated crosswalks and controlled intersections; make eye contact with drivers and ensure vehicles have come to a complete stop before crossing; stay on the sidewalk when walking to and from school; and stay at a safe distance from the street when waiting for transit.

Parents: Ensure that your children know the safest route to and from school; if you’re picking them up, park where it’s safe to do so.

Drivers: Pay attention to road signage, know the speed limit and whether you’re entering a school or playground zone; keep an eye out for children, especially during school operating hours; and stop when a school bus is flashing its alternating red lights.

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