Message from the Chief – School’s Back in Session, Soon – With the start of a new school year just days away, it’s a great time to discuss school safety.
As we observed every new school year, many become overwhelmed or stressed from trying to get everything ready for the first day/week of school. It’s best to plan your daily start earlier and be mindful of our kiddos and their safety while on your daily commute.
Consider the following safety tips and know what to expect from law enforcement. Safety is our number one priority.
Your Child's Daily Commute
Teach your children the basic rules of the road, those rules that apply to walkers. For example: NEVER cross the street against a red light, wait for the green light. Walkers should stay visible, wear reflective clothing/backpacks, or wear bright colors so motorists can see them. Plan a safe, direct route, to and from school or the bus stop, and parents stay aware of your child’s route. If able, walk in groups.
Lastly, teach your children to avoid suspicious locations or people and to report those instances to a person of trust (teacher, officer, or other trusted adult). A good way to know and avoid these places is by using the free app Life360. We discuss more about this app below.
Cyclists must obey the rules of the road. This means cyclists must stop for red lights and stop signs, etc. Also, bicycles must be equipped with front and rear reflectors at all times. A red taillight and clear front headlight must be used when riding after dark. Again, it’s a good idea to wear reflective material or brightly colored clothing to help with visibility.
Message for Motorists
Be prepared for heavy traffic and long delays the first couple weeks of school. It’s a good idea to plan your day a bit earlier, so you do not have to rush. While on your commute, be mindful of children on bikes and on foot, because they may have an occasional tendency to dart out in front of you.
HANG UP AND DRIVE! – Using your cell phone for calls or texting is prohibited citywide, not just in a school zone. Officers will be issuing citations to those they catch.
What to Expect from Law Enforcement
Law Enforcement Activities
Police will be out in force patrolling our school zones before, during, and immediately after school. We will be looking for speeding motorists, along with distracted and aggressive drivers. During the first several weeks, patrol officers will be exercising zero tolerance in school zones. This means if you are contacted for one of the following violations, you will receive a ticket.
- Passing a stopped, loading/unloading school bus
- Illegal Parking (“No Parking” areas and double parking)
- Speeding in School Zone
- Use of Cell Phone
- Unrestrained Child Passenger
Officers will be in marked and unmarked police vehicles while patrolling school zones. Fair warning: We are watching and working to provide for another safe and prosperous school year.
Working together, we can ensure the safest, most favorable atmosphere for our children to live, learn and play this school year.
Life360 – We’ve partnered with Life360 to bring you & your family added security. Keep an eye on your loved ones while providing them a way to alert you when something is wrong. Additionally, we supply Life360 with sex offender & crime data so you know what’s going on around you and your loved ones. Also, set up alerts and know that your child made it safely to school or safely back home.
NCMEC – The National Center of Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) provides a wealth of resourceful information. Did you know – most abductions occur between 2pm and 7pm; or that 51% of children avoided being abducted by simply running away? Learn more at NCMEC online and arm your child with knowledge.