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School’s back – Slow down and remember school zone safety

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Drivers are being urged to slow down on local roads this week as school resumes and 40km/h speed zones come back into force.

Dubbo City Council's Road Safety Officer Josie Howard has encouraged Dubbo road users to be aware of the increased level of activity and of the hefty fines for school zone parking infringements.

“After an extended break, many drivers forget about the school zone hours and speed limits, but at this time of the year it is more important than ever to be cautious,” Ms Howard said.

“It is imperative that people travelling through a school zone on weekdays between 8am and 9.30am, and from 2.30pm to 4pm stick to the 40km/h speed limit.”

Ms Howard said a child’s peripheral vision was not fully developed and they don't  tend to scan an environment as quickly or as thoroughly as most adults do.

"They tend to focus directly on what they are doing, such as playing with a ball or running directly to their parents across the road, so they are more likely to do something unpredictable," she said.

Ms Howard said it was also important for parents to be responsible road safety role models.

“One of the worst things you can do in regard to road safety is to park on the opposite side of a road and call a child to run to the car," she said.

“People collecting children from school should park the car in a designated parking zone and walk to the child.”

Council Parking Patrol Officers will be enforcing school zone requirements during the back-to-school period to ensure the safety of students and carers around schools.

School zone parking infringements can carry hefty fines and demerit points. Offences to be enforced include:

Disobeying no stopping/no parking sign (school zone) - $265 | 2 demerit points
Stopping on or near children’s/pedestrian crossing (school zone) - $353 | 2 demerit points
Stopping in or near a bus zone/bus stop (school zone) - $265 | 2 demerit points
Double parking (school zone) - $265 | 2 demerit points

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