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Back to School Safe Driving Tips

Backseat view from a car approaching a crosswalk with school children.

Learn how to stay safe on the road during back to school season.

When the school year starts, that means not only more buses on the roads, but also more bicyclists and pedestrians that may not always be paying attention before they cross the street. With this increased activity on and along the roadways, it’s a good time to remember to pay careful attention when you are behind the wheel, abide by the speed limits and other laws, and by all means avoid distracted driving.

On the “Distracted Driving” page of its website, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) described 3 main types of distraction:

  • Visual – removing your eyes from the road, such as to change the radio station.
  • Manual – removing your hands from the wheel, for example to eat or to drink your coffee.
  • Cognitive – not paying attention while driving, perhaps while talking on your cell phone.

The CDC page notes that, while each of these activities can endanger the lives of drivers and others, texting is particularly dangerous because it involves all three distractions. Moreover, according to the page, drivers under the age of 20 have the highest proportion of distraction-related fatal accidents, so please remind your high school drivers about the dangers of distracted driving before they head off for school.

Also, be sure to watch out for school buses and to stop when their lights are flashing. Leave yourself extra room to stop if you are driving behind a bus, and never pass a school bus that is picking up or dropping off children. Remember, children can dart out quickly as they catch or leave their bus so it’s important to be extra vigilant.

You may want to build some extra time into your commute this fall to account for the increased traffic and bus stops. Please take your time and remember to drive carefully and help keep our school children safe.

To view the full CDC “Distracted Driving” page, please visit www.cdc.gov. CDC.gov (www.cdc.gov) is your online source for credible health information and is the official Web site of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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