It’s almost the start of a new school year with the inevitable hectic mornings and frenzy of activity in school zones. Here are three rules you should follow to ensure everyone’s safety. Stay vigilant, stay safe!
1) Respect flashing lights on school buses
If a school bus has turned on its flashing red lights and has extended its stop-sign, you must stop at least five meters behind the bus.
If you’re approaching a school bus with flashing lights from the front, you must also respect this rule. However, if there is a physical separation between opposing lanes of traffic, you can continue without stopping.
Failing to respect the 5-meter stopping distance can net you a fine of $200-$300 and nine demerit points.
Cyclists must also stop behind school buses. Failing to do so can result in a fine of $80-$100.
2) Obey crossing guards
Where crossing guards are present, their orders are more important than any other traffic signs or lights.
This means that you must stop when a crossing guard tells you to stop to allow children to cross the road. This applies even if you have a green light.
Failure to obey a crossing guard can result in a $200-$400 ticket and four demerit points.
3) Watch your speed
Most cities have rules about how fast you can go, usually a maximum of 50km/h. In school zones, speed limits are often lower, usually 30km/h. Pay close attention to traffic signs and follow them.
Fines and demerit points for speeding depend on how much above the speed limit you were travelling. For example, if you drive 60km/h in a 30 km/h zone, you could be fined $210 and get two demerit points.
Fines for speeding are doubled in school zones during the times indicated on school zone traffic signs.