The summer holidays are at an end and the school run is now in the fore-front of parents’ minds.
Regardless of the years you have been driving on the road, early-morning starts see many drivers in a rush and distracted. This poses additional hazards for pupils and other people who are walking, cycling and driving in the locality.
Here are some top back-to-school driving tips from the Perrys team – many of whom are parents, too.
- Give yourself enough time. A hurried breakfast, misplaced packed lunches and half-dressed children can put you in a bad frame of mind.
- If you use child seats or booster seats, ensure they are still totally fit for purpose and secured in the car correctly.
- Think about how you park and don’t block crossings or use the zig-zag “no-waiting” areas right outside the school.
- Keep a proper eye out for blind spots when moving off from your parking spot. Youngsters are thinking about their friends they may not have seen for six weeks, and they’re contemplating the day ahead – not your vehicle as they hurry to the school gates.
- Be on the ball and be ready to stop quickly. Young kids can be unpredictable – they are likely to be focusing on other things and don’t always have the experience to properly judge your car’s approaching speed.
- Watch out for young cyclists. Kids on bikes are very often inexperienced and might have a few unstable moments. Slow right down and allow lots of room between your car and the cyclist. If in doubt, just wait.
- 20mph is enough. Speed limits in school zones are a lot lower for a good reason. Remember, it is a limit not a target to aim for.
- Advise your children about road safety. Just looking right then left (then right once again for Green Cross Coders) can genuinely save lives. Take time to show your kids the correct things to do, and remember, if you run or don’t take notice of the red man, they will copy your actions.
Making a few straightforward changes to the way we drive can help keep our children – as well as other peoples’ kids – safe from harm. Think about parking your car a slight distance away from the school and finishing the trip on foot. It will reduce the traffic jams around the school and may benefit our health too!