It's back-to-school season in Nova Scotia. While students refresh their memories on grammar rules and math formulas, it's a good time for motorists and pedestrians to refresh their school zone safety knowledge.
Taking a page from the teachers' play book, we've written school-themed mnemonic rhymes to help you remember some important rules of the road.
Slow down in school zones
If kids are around and the speed limit is 50,
be like the square root of 900,
and change to 30 swiftly.
The sign may read "50 km" but when children are present, the speed limit changes to 30 km/h. This helps protect kids who could run into the road unexpectedly. Speeding in a school zone can net you a first offense fine of:
- $352.50 and two points on your license for travelling 1-15 km/h over the speed limit
- $467.50, three points on your license and a seven day license suspension for travelling 16-30 km/h over the speed limit
- $697.50, four points on your license and a 7 day license suspension for travelling 31 or more km/h over the speed limit
Stop for school buses
If a school bus is parked with stop lights flashing red,
change from an object in motion,
to one at rest instead.
When Nova Scotia school buses are loading or unloading passengers, they park in the street and project a "Stop" sign with flashing red lights from the side of the vehicle. This signals drivers to stop and stay stopped until the lights finish blinking. Failure to stop for a school bus could result in a fine of $410, plus six points on your license for a first offense.
Be careful at intersections
Make like a pencil and take note of this:
intersections are places,
of especially high risk.
Before you enter, be cautious and prudent.
Study the scene,
like a superstar student.
Both drivers and pedestrians have a role to play in intersection safety. Everyone should approach intersections by scanning the area before crossing through. At intersections with crossing guards, drivers and pedestrians should wait until the guard says it's safe to cross. Failure to obey a crossing guard could result in a fine of $697.50 plus six points on your license and a revoked license for a first offense.
Pay attention while walking
Multiply your focus.
Reduce your speed.
Keep safe through your actions.
When there's a lot going on around you, it can be tough to stay focused but pedestrians need to pay attention to what's happening around them. This means looking both ways before crossing the street, making eye contact with drivers before stepping off the curb and never using electronic devices while walking.
Throughout September and the rest of the academic year, police will be patrolling school zones to enforce safe driving. For more refreshers on school zone safety tips, follow us on Facebook (Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Nova Scotia) and Twitter (@RCMPNS) and look for the hashtag #SchoolZoneSafety. Have a safe September!