As the 2017-18 school year begins, AAA reminds motorists to remember the “ABC’s” of auto safety in its “School’s Open - Drive Carefully Campaign.”

As the 2017-18 school year begins, AAA reminds motorists to remember the “ABC’s” of auto safety in its “School’s Open - Drive Carefully Campaign.”
A great burden is on the motorist to take extra precaution when driving in areas with school age children. Many children have very little experience in dealing with traffic situations and many will be going to school for the first time.
“The opening of school is a hectic time for everyone,” said Mike Right, AAA vice president. “Children are excited to be going back to school and to their friends. Parents are trying to get to work and get their children to school on time. Often, they’re distracted and may not be focused on basic traffic safety practices.”
AAA’s annual “School’s Open - Drive Carefully” campaign, now in its 85th year, alerts motorists to the special risk to school age children from motor vehicles. During the campaign, AAA is reminding drivers that children are not small adults. Children may also make the mistake of assuming hat if they can see a car the driver can see them - often motorists have a difficult time seeing children because of their small stature.
Children are active, inquisitive and impetuous, and never miss an opportunity to explore something that interests them - even if it means venturing into the street. Many children know little of pedestrian safety rules, and even those that do are likely to forget them in pursuit of a rolling ball or wind-tossed school paper.
AAA offers these safety reminders for motorists:
• When in school zones, watch for reduced speed limit signs that become effective when classes are in session.
• Remember the law about stopping before passing or over-taking a school bus stopped to pickup or discharge children.
• Watch for youngsters riding bicycles. They may appear suddenly from a blind spot.
• If you are a parent, help your child map out his or her safest way to school. And remember that traffic hazards near schools multiply when children are dropped off and picked up in family cars.
• Remember that school traffic controls such as stop signs, traffic signals, adult crossing guards and safety patrols are now operating. Summer driving habits must change to look for and one these special controls.
• Anticipate the actions of youngsters and be ready for anything by reducing speed in areas where children are present.