School year starts soon, so here are driver, pedestrian safety refreshers
With the new school year starting in a few weeks, I wanted to get the jump on some information which I hope will be helpful.
As in the past, we will begin to see an increase in the amount of pedestrian traffic as those students living within proximity to the schools will begin their morning and afternoon pilgrimages to and from the centers of learning.
For those of us operating motor vehicles during those peak times, we need to be aware of this activity and do all that we can to create a safe walking environment for them.
For those of you students on foot eagerly making your way to the halls of learning, please do your part to abide by the rules which govern pedestrians. This means crossing at crosswalks and looking both ways before crossing a street. Even though you may have the right of way, it means little in the event of an accident.
For those in the rural areas, please be mindful of school buses and the precious cargo they are carrying.
Just as a refresher, State Statute 346.48, “Vehicles to stop for school buses displaying flashing lights," states that any vehicle approaching from either the front or the back of a school bus with its flashing lights activated must stop not less than 20 feet from the bus and shall remain stopped until the bus resumes motion or the operator of the bus has extinguished its flashing lights.
I am sure that any of us who have traveled with our own children in the vehicle can appreciate the demands upon those who have chosen to transport our children to and from school in buses every day. Let’s not add our driving behavior to the list of behaviors they already need to contend with.
On a somewhat similar note, once the students get to school this year, they will be met with some new protocols and procedures related to school safety.
Many of our schools have taken great strides and gone through extensive efforts to keep our schools and those in them as safe as possible. In some cases this may mean new entry points or routes of travel coming in and out of the buildings. In some cases these changes may also impact how parents drop off or pick up their children.
Please be patient and adhere to these changes. They are not meant to frustrate or challenge you, but rather to facilitate the safe movement during those busy times of the day, as well as to keep our children safe throughout the entire school day. We should all be grateful for the never-ending vigilance which the school community maintains for the sakes of our students.
From our role here in law enforcement, we continue to train and prepare for any and all emergencies which could occur in our schools. I was fortunate to have attended an Integrated Response Course a few weeks ago and came away with an appreciation for how well our law, fire and EMS agencies in Kewaunee County train together and respect each other’s roles in any and all critical events. Just like our counterparts within the schools, we continue to refine and improve our training and procedures.
Good luck to all of our students this year. I hope each of you appreciates the support and resources this community provides and know that we are all behind you in your efforts. I know you will make us proud.
Matt Joski is Kewaunee County Sheriff.
This article originally appeared on Green Bay Press-Gazette: School year starts soon, so here are driver, pedestrian safety refreshers