Denver Police reminds drivers of school zone safety during back-to-school week

Denver Public Schools start classes on Monday
Posted at 2:27 PM, Aug 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-19 19:16:15-04

DENVER -- Students in Denver Public Schools are enjoying their last day of summer on Sunday before returning to classes for a new school year this Monday.

Which is why the Denver Police Department wants to remind commuters to drive safely, since the new school year also brings with it an increase in bicycle and pedestrian traffic around bus stops, schools and surrounding neighborhoods.

Denver Police plans to increase officer visibility in school zones and conduct enforcement, as necessary, to help ensure safety and remind commuters to slow down and obey all traffic laws. The department shared the tips below for drivers to consider during back-to-school week:

Tips for Drivers:

1. Slow down and obey all traffic laws and speed limits.
2. Stop for school busses that are loading or unloading children.
3. Watch for and obey signals from school crossing guards.
4. Be alert and watch for children near schools, bus stops and in school parking lots.
5. Watch for school zone signals and obey the reduced speed limit.
6. Do not pass other vehicles in school zones or at crosswalks as stopped vehicles may be allowing children to cross the road.
7. Do not change lanes in school zones.
8. Do not make U-Turns in school zones.
9. Do not text or otherwise use a cell phone unless it is completely hands-free.
10. Unless licensed to do so, do not use handicap or emergency vehicle lanes or spaces to drop off or pick up children at school.

Tips for Students/Families:

1. Parents of younger students who ride a school bus should consider escorting their children to and from their bus stop.
2. Children should not stand or play in the roadway while waiting for or exiting a school bus.
3. Students who ride the bus should follow all safety rules and avoid distracting the driver.
4. Students who walk should do so in a group, when possible, and follow pedestrian laws.
5. Cross streets only at crosswalks and follow the directions given by school crossing guards.
6. Students who ride a bike should wear a helmet and follow all safety rules for bicyclists.
7. Walk – don’t ride – a bicycle across streets and only in designated crosswalks.
8. Students who drive to school should avoid speeding and minimize distractions from cell phone usage, eating, loud music or disruptive passengers.
9. Never overload a vehicle. Remember that every passenger must use a safety belt, or if required, a child safety seat.
10. Always act as a good role model for younger siblings and fellow students.