Please make road safety a priority, is the appeal this week as thousands of Donegal school children return to school after the summer break this week.
And road safety activists in the county say that it is everybody's responsibility to ensure our vulnerable road users are always safe on our roads.
The Donegal Road Safety Working Group is now asking parents, guardians, and teachers to make road safety a priority in their back to school preparations.
The return to school days brings more traffic in the morning and afternoon. School buses are picking up children, children walking and on bikes are hurrying to get to school before the bell rings, parents are trying to drop their children off before they go to work.
It is vitally important that motorists slow down and pay attention when children are on the road, especially before and after school. Motorists are being reminded that there will be a significant increase in school going traffic in the coming days. They should also expect to see a rise in the number of children using the roads to get to school.
Brian O’Donnell, Road Safety Officer said:
“Children are the most vulnerable of our road users so it’s really important that we teach them to be ‘streetwise’ about road safety. Always demonstrate good road safety behaviour as your child will learn from your example. If your child walks or cycles to school, take them on the route in advance and make sure they know where they are going and how to use the roads and footpaths safely.
"If they travel by car or bus, make sure they know how important it is, to put their seatbelt on always. Show them how you put on your seatbelt any time you get into the car, no matter how short the journey and always demonstrate good, safe and responsible road behaviour.”
“While some of the most dangerous days of driving belong to summer, going back to school has its own set of perils for both students and motorists alike. Each one of us must play our part to help make the roads safe and look out for everyone who uses them. By exercising extra care and caution, we can make the roads safer for everyone”.
Know the speed limit.
Put down the mobile phone.
Watch for pedestrians.
Drive slowly past parked cars.
Never overtake a school bus that is dropping off or picking up children.
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