Fire district offers back-to-school safety tips

By Pagosa Fire
Protection District
Special to The SUN
The first hints of fall are in the air in the Pagosa Springs area and school is back in session for area youth. Please use the following tips to ensure the safety of both students and adults.
Bus stop safety
According to research by the National Safety Council, most of the children who lose their lives in bus-related incidents are 4 to 7 years old and they’re walking. They are hit by the bus or by a motorist illegally passing a stopped bus.
Teach children to stand only in designated bus stops at a safe distance from traffic flows. Always slow down when driving along bus routes, anticipating children may be nearby.
Never pass a bus with flashing lights; yellow lights warn of impending stops, while red lights indicate children are loading or unloading from bus.
School zone congestion
Vehicle congestion in school zones can be hazardous if both pedestrians and drivers aren’t paying attention to the task at hand. Drivers should eliminate all distractions (cellphones, loud music, disruptive conversations) while traveling through school zones. Pedestrians should do the same, paying attention to all activity in the area.
Bikes, scooters and skateboards
School-goers often take advantage of pleasant fall weather to ride their bikes, scooters and skateboards to school. While fun, these modes of transportation have their own set of risks. Children can easily ride through parked vehicles emerging into traffic flows with very little warning to drivers. Drivers must remain vigilant and prepared to stop quickly if needed.
Ensure riders have proper protective equipment (helmets, knee/elbow pads, proper footwear) before every trip.

This story was posted on September 15, 2019.