Back to School Safety Checklist for Tampa
Posted By Darrigo & Diaz
August is Back to School Safety Month. Here are transportation safety tipes for Back to School Tampa.
With the new school year fast approaching in Hillsborough County, now is the perfect time to review safety tips with your children. For many, getting to and from school involves some form of transportation, whether it’s a school bus, walking, cycling, or carpooling. As parents, educators, and community members, ensuring back-to-school transportation safety is paramount. In this blog, we share tips to help ensure a safe journey for our young learners.
1. School bus safety
Thousands of Tampa Bay students will be taking the bus to and from school. If your child is riding the bus this year, take a moment to review these safety habits.
– Go to the bus stop with your child to teach them the proper way to get on and off the bus.
– Teach your children to stand at least 6 feet (or three giant steps) away from the curb.
– If your child must cross the street in front of the bus, teach him or her to walk on the side of the road until they are 10 feet ahead of the bus; your child and the bus driver should always be able to one another.
– Encourage your child to listen to the bus driver’s instructions and to remain in his or her seat until the bus has fully stopped at the school.
2. Pedestrian safety
If your child will be walking to and from school, here are a few recommendations and tips to help keep your child safe.
– Walk the route with your child and identify potential hazards, such as busy intersections or blind spots.
– Teach your child to use crosswalks, follow traffic signals, and never run out into the street unexpectedly.
– If your child will be walking during dawn or dusk, consider placing reflective strips on his or her backpack.
– If your child has a cellphone, encourage them to not be distracted while walking to and from school. This includes listening to music with headphones in, watching videos, playing games, texting or scrolling on social media. Multiple observational studies report that anywhere from 12 to 45 percent of pedestrians injured in an accident are caused by smartphone distractions.
3. Bicycle safety
If your child will be riding his or her bike to school, here are a few recommendations and tips to help keep them safe.
– Make sure your child always wears a helmet and that the helmet fits correctly.
– Review the route with your child and show them potential hazards, such as busy intersections, changes in bicycle lanes, and blind spots.
– Make sure your child wears proper shoes. Loose fitting shoes, flip flops, or strappy sandals and cause crashes.
– Check the condition of the bike, including the brakes and tires.
– Show your child how to use hand signals to turn.
– If your child will be riding during dawn or dusk, consider placing reflective strips on his or her backpack and adding a light to the back and front of the bike.
– If your child has a cellphone, encourage them to not be distracted while riding to and from school. This includes listening to music with headphones in, watching videos, playing games, texting or scrolling on social media.
4. Carpooling safety
Whether you are driving the carpool or your child is part of a neighborhood carpool, here are a few recommendations and tips to help keep everyone safe.
– Ensure all passengers are securely buckled up in appropriate car seats or seat belts, depending on age and size.
– Designate pick-up and drop-off locations away from congested areas.
– Encourage children to enter and exit the vehicle safely without rushing.
– If you are driving, never drive distracted.
Back to school Tampa
Back to school is an exciting time, but it also brings changes to traffic patterns. Be prepared for more traffic congestion, especially in the morning and afternoon. Be mindful of buses stopping frequently to pick up children, and always obey the speed limit in school zones. Be on the look out for children walking and bicycling to and from school, and never drive distracted. Remember, we all have a responsibility to help keep our Tampa roadways safe.
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