Q: The No. 1 source of poor and illegal driving around the schools not far from where we live? Parents! I avoid these areas during pickup and drop-off times because the driving is so unsafe.
Parents, be alert, watch your surroundings and watch, especially, for kids and traffic.
Far too often, I see a child hop in the back seat of a car, and as the door shuts, the parent accelerates into an illegal u-turn with no blinker, and no regard for other kids or traffic. Kids sometimes do oblivious things, so it is up to all of us to be aware. And please, no pickups from the middle lane! Kids darting into traffic to get to “their” car is very hazardous.
Peter David, San Jose
A: The recent column that included safe driving practices around schools inspired others to share observations and advice.
Q: The column reminding drivers of school opening safety should be heeded most by parents who drive their children to and from school (I’m a former driver of a 72-passenger school bus and I saw it all).
Karen Poret, Santa Cruz
Q: It is also worth mentioning that children walking and cycling to and from school need reminders, too, such as:
- Use the bike and share lanes for bike travel and cycle in the direction of traffic, not against it.
- Be cautious at intersections, especially those that are not controlled by traffic lights or stop signs.
- Similar rules apply when walking, especially if using a cell phone while walking. You have the right of way but insisting on it without looking to see whether traffic is obeying the rules could end up poorly for you.
Bob Sutis, Los Altos
Q: You ask drivers to be more cautious with school back in session, but it’s really hard when students show no respect for drivers or, often, themselves. I was pulling out of a Palo Alto business recently, looking both ways, and noticed a girl riding a bike on the sidewalk in the wrong direction with no hands on the handlebars and on her cell phone! Of course I stopped for her and she showed no recognition I was even there!
Oftentimes in my neighborhood, kids ride four or five abreast and streets are so narrow that cars can’t go around. They pay zero attention to stop signs on either side of roads they are crossing, and power through as though they are invincible. Parents, teach your children to respect the road, drivers, and themselves enough to pay attention to their surroundings.
Rebecca Hayman, Los Altos
A: Thanks to all for sharing this safety advice for school zones.
Look for Gary Richards at facebook.com/mr.roadshow or contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.