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Home » Ithaca Police Department » As school begins Livingston County wants to remind parents and children the importance of safety and school buses

As school begins Livingston County wants to remind parents and children the importance of safety and school buses

As the new school year has begun and in-person learning has resumed for many students, Livingston County is encouraging residents to be extra cautious along our roadways while children travel to and from school.

“Let’s work together to keep this busy school year safe for everyone,” stated David L. LeFeber, Chairman of the Livingston County Board of Supervisors. “Whether you are driving, walking, biking, or riding a bus, we encourage you to stay alert, use good judgment, and follow the rules of the road.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) provides the following back-to-school safety tips for multiple modes of travel:

Pedestrian Safety
· If you are driving, especially in a neighborhood, look out for pedestrians at all times, everywhere. Foot traffic is likely to be higher as more families and children are at home.
· Use the sidewalk whenever possible, and if there isn’t a sidewalk, walk on the edge of the street facing traffic.
· Whenever they are available, use marked crosswalks to cross the street, and look left-right-left for vehicles or bikes before crossing.
· Make sure you never play, push or shove others when you walk around traffic.
· Everyone should watch the road, not their phones.

Finger Lakes Partners (Billboard)

Bicycle Safety
· Always wear a correctly fitted helmet, and securely fasten the chin strap.
· Ride in the same direction as traffic, and follow traffic signs and signals.
· Stay in the bike lane whenever possible.
· Never use electronics while riding – they are distracting.

School Bus Safety
If you are driving, remember these simple rules:

o Yellow flashing lights on a school bus mean slow down — don’t speed up — because the bus is preparing to stop. There are likely students waiting to get on the bus or parents waiting nearby to pick up children.
o Red flashing lights mean stop — and wait at least 20 feet behind the bus — because children are getting on or off the school bus. Stay stopped until the red lights stop flashing, the extended stop-arm is withdrawn, and the bus begins moving.
o Even when lights aren’t flashing, watch for children, particularly in the morning or mid-afternoon, around school arrival and dismissal times. Be alert as you back out of a driveway, or drive through a neighborhood, school zone or bus stop.

Parents – talk bus safety with your children:
o Your child should arrive at the bus stop at least 5 minutes before the bus is scheduled to arrive. Teach them to play it SAFE:
Stay five steps away from the curb.
Always wait until the bus comes to a complete stop and the bus driver signals for you to board.
Face forward after finding a seat on the bus.
Exit the bus after it stops and look left-right-left for cars before crossing a street.

Child Safety:
Since many families are at home more often during the public health emergency, it’s important to remember to lock all unattended vehicles. Young children can see a car as a playground, and crawl in and get trapped.