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School’s Open, Drive Safely

More than 55 million children nationwide will soon head back to school. AAA’s annual School’s Open – Drive Carefully campaign aims to curb traffic fatalities and injuries among children, especially at the end of the school day. More than 1 in 4 child pedestrian fatalities occur between 3 and 7 p.m. Here are some ways drivers can drive safely and keep students safe.

Be careful near bus stops.

Drivers must stop when school buses illuminate their stop signs, even if they’re on the opposite side of the road. Ignoring these signs endangers children, and could earn you a ticket.

Slow down.

School zones have reduced speed limits for a reason. Pedestrians struck by vehicles going 25 mph are two-thirds less likely to be killed compared with vehicles traveling 35 mph.

Get off the phone.

Having your eyes on your cellphone for just a moment could spell disaster if a child darts unexpectedly into the road.

Watch out for bikes.

Give young bike riders at least 3 feet of passing distance.

Back up carefully.

Backup cameras are increasingly common, but they don’t eliminate blind spots. Back out of your driveway or a parking spot slowly.

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