August is Back-to-School Safety Month

Community

UPSTATE, S.C. (WSPA) – Since schools are back in session crosswalks, sidewalks, and road ways have increased traffic; one organization said safety should be top of mind.

Safe Kids Upstate found it’s best to remind drivers and pedestrians walking to school about, simple yet important, safety tips.

Daby Snipes, Safe Kids Upstate Program Coordinator, said its best for everyone to be attentive, putting their electronic devices down and eyes up.

Safety, Snipes said, is a community issue.

“One thing for sure is to be alert, to make it a priority. Look for children, make sure, you know things are very busy these days. We’ve got schedules and you don’t wanna run late. But, we’ve got to remember our children are our precious resource and their our responsibility,” Snipes said.

Annual data from safe kids found more than 19,000 children will get medical attention for injuries from walking.

Here are five safety tips to use at drop-off and pick-up times around schools:

  1. Put devices down while crossing the street
    • Look up, listen and make eye contact with drivers before crossing the street: 1- 5 high school students cross the street while distracted by technology.
  2. Walk with your kids to the bus stop and wait with them
    • If parents cannot walk the child, a trusted friend or older sibling should walk and wait with them
    • Kids should stand at least three giant steps back from the curb while waiting
    • Kids should board the bus one at a time
  3. Teach kids to wait for the bus to come to a complete stop before boarding or getting off
    • Never to walk behind the bus to cross the street
  4. If your child needs to cross the street there are several steps
    • After getting off the bus, take five giant steps in front of the bus and make eye contact with the bus driver
    • Cross when the driver says it’s safe.
    • Kids should look 3-ways: left, right and left again before crossing
  5. Make sure your carpool is safe.
    • Each child in the carpool should have the age correct car seat based on weight and height and the laws in your state.

Another safe kids study found almost 500 children die each year in pedestrian accidents. Sometimes it’s out of the student’s hands, that’s where safe driving comes into play.

Here are a few safety tips for motorists near schools and neighborhoods:

  1. Don’t block crosswalks
    • Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks
    • Take extra precaution in school zones
  2. Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians
    • Whether it’s the stopped school bus law, or otherwise
  3. Stop far enough back, at least 10 feet, from a school bus
    • Children need that extra room to safely enter and exit the bus

Whether your child is one of the more than 350,000 upstate bus riders, or among the hundreds of bicyclist and walkers, teach them vigilance about their own safety.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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