When each new school year starts, Kentucky safety advocates and law enforcement try to encourage drivers to be vigilant near schools and where children are in general.
Unfortunately, even the most aggressive campaigns will not prevent all accidents and children can be seriously hurt because of it.
Parents, teachers and authority figures should show children how to be safe. When an accident does occur, it is essential to have an idea of what options are available to make sure drivers are held accountable for causing the collision.
KYTC gives tips for drivers when kids are around
With a new school year underway, the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has been entreating drivers to be cautious. That includes near school zones, when they see school buses and in locations where kids may congregate. This is an annual concern and despite attempts to keep kids safe, accidents will happen.
Drivers are told to maintain the speed limits in school zones. Near schools, the speed limit is lower than other roads. Speeding is one of the primary catalysts for kids being in an accident. There are rules for when school buses are stopped. By law, if the bus has its stop sign arm extended and its red lights are flashing, drivers must stop as kids are getting on and off. Some drivers do not.
Distracted driving is a constant problem, but it is even more prominent when near schools. Simply looking down at a device for three seconds is more than enough time to hit a child. Other forms of distraction include checking navigation apps, eating, changing the radio or interacting with passengers. All should be limited or outright avoided.
Schoolchildren are inherently vulnerable
Safety should be a priority when on the road. This is particularly true when children are around. With the start of another school year and kids heading back and forth on foot, on bicycles, in automobiles and school buses, one mistake or act of recklessness can cause a catastrophic injury or fatality.
For children, their parents and others who are tasked with ensuring safety, attentiveness and watching for possible danger spots is crucial. Still, that will not prevent all accidents. When an accident cannot be avoided, there are a litany of problems people can face if their child was hurt.
They could need extensive medical care and rehabilitation. Getting back to school could be a challenge and they could require special accommodations there and at home. They might be harmed mentally and emotionally as well as physically.
The list goes beyond simply recovering financially. It extends to holding those who caused the auto accident accountable. Protecting children includes awareness of how and accidents occur and making sure those who were driving are also held responsible for their behaviors.