Here are ICBC’s smart driving tips for drivers and parents to help keep kids safe.
Tips for parents and students:
Consider posting these safety tips somewhere in your home and review them with your kids—even older children need to be reminded about road safety.
- Remove your headphones; put away your phone, MP3 player or other gadgets when crossing a street. Focus your full attention on the road so you can see, hear and respond safely.
- Use designated crossing points and follow pedestrian traffic signs and signals. Make eye contact with drivers, so you both know you see each other. The most common road safety error made by kids is not finding a safe place to cross. Teach your child to cross at intersections that have a pedestrian crossing light or a marked crosswalk whenever possible.
- Dress to be seen. Wear bright or light coloured clothing. In dark or bad weather, wear reflective material on clothes or accessories.
- Always walk on the inside edge of the sidewalk—away from the road. This way, you’re further away from the traffic. If there is no sidewalk, always walk facing traffic so you can see oncoming vehicles and drivers can see you.
- Be aware of parked vehicles in parking lots and on the road. Drivers may not see you between parked vehicles and you may not see them moving. Before crossing or walking through a parking lot, stop and look left-right-left around the parked vehicle and avoid taking unnecessary shortcuts through parking lots.
Tips for drivers:
When school is in session, a 30-km/h school zone speed limit is in effect from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. every school day, unless otherwise posted. Also, remember that vehicles approaching from both directions must stop for school buses when their lights are flashing.
- Plan ahead and be alert. Driving routes with less traffic in the summer may now face congestion, so give yourself extra time to get to your destination. Take your time and don't rush - especially through intersections. Look for children especially near or around crosswalks and intersections.
- Always yield to pedestrians (it’s the law).
- When dropping off children in a school zone stop and allow them to exit onto the sidewalk side of the car. Never allow a child to cross mid-block.
- If a vehicle is stopped in front of you or in the lane next to you, they may be yielding for a pedestrian, so be prepared to stop.
- Always watch for pedestrians when you’re backing up. Before you get into your vehicle, make it a habit to walk around your vehicle to ensure no small kids are behind it. And remember, children will notice your driving behaviour, so set an example and drive smart.