Safety Tips Offered as WCSD Gets Back in Session
Thousands of students headed back to school on Monday. Washoe County School District bus drivers use more than 350 buses to transport 20,000 students each day.
Thousands of Washoe County students headed back to school on Monday. Both law enforcement and district officials have an important safety reminders for drivers.
School district leaders traveled throughout the district on Monday, greeting parents and incoming students.
Many of who were more than ready to get their new school year started.
"Was it hard to wake up?"
"Not really because I went to bed early so it wouldn't be hard," says 7th grader Taimane Talamoni.
The day began dark and early, at the transportation center, to thank those who often work behind-the-scenes, the bus drivers.
"Just wanted to come out and celebrate the people who get up at 4 o' clock in the morning to get the district started and running. The district doesn't start when the bell rings at school. We actually start a lot earlier than that," says
Washoe County School District bus drivers use more than 350 buses to transport 20,000 students each day.
That’s enough to drive back and forth to the moon ten times. While those drivers have plenty of training under their belts, everyone on the road needs to remember safety first when driving through school zones.
Before they head out on their routes, drivers heading to work need to be mindful of both them and school zones.
"Be careful, pay attention, remember they are students and sometimes Don’t look both ways like they’re supposed to. But parents, also remind your students of all the things they need to do as they walk to and from school,” says WCSD Superintendent Traci Davis.
The speed limit in most school zones is about 15 miles per hour.
It's also important to slow down not just in front of schools, but also in neighborhoods and areas where school buses may be picking up kids.
If a bus stops and those red lights are activated, that means to come to a complete stop whether you’re approaching the bus from behind or in front.
Remember a few years back, a legislative change made it illegal to do u-turns in active school and pedestrian zones. Keep in mind that cars often create inherent blind spots since kids can be lower than eye level so make sure to be aware of your surroundings.
"If you see a child on the sidewalk, make sure you make eye contact and determine where they are going before you proceed forward,” says Washoe County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. David Bailey.
Sergeant Bailey says all local agencies will be joining forces, starting Monday, for pedestrian safety enforcement.
So they'll have extra officers on the streets specifically focusing on catching drivers who ignore these rules.
The district voted to extend walk zones by a quarter of a mile for elementary and middle school students.