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News > Safety first as children head back to school
Safety first as children head back to school

Posted 8/9/2013   Updated 8/9/2013 Email story   Print story


by Airman 1st Class Colin Cates
49th Wing Public Affairs

8/9/2013 - HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -  -- As summer break comes to an end, children redirect their attention to math and English instead of video games, and the streets in front of schools are yet again filled with youth.

The new school year begins this week, and back-to-school safety should be a priority for everyone.

In order to keep these young minds growing, teachers, parents and children need to be aware of the potential hazards that might accompany even the most simplest tasks, to include traveling to school.

There are hundreds of students each year who use the crosswalks on base. With this number of children walking to and from school, crossing guards alone are not enough. It is important for both drivers and pedestrians to be conscious of their surroundings.

"With the summer break just ending, not everyone is used to seeing the blinking yellow lights and children crossing the street should make sure they have eye contact with the driver and ensure the car has fully stopped before crossing," said Daniel Salinas, 49th Wing Ground Safety manager.

The speed limit in school zones is 15 mph. Drivers must obey speed limits and follow directions given by crossing guards and personnel directing traffic. They must also be alert around residential neighborhoods and school zones.

"It is important that children use the sidewalks and crosswalks to make sure they are being safe, along with children riding their bike need to walk their bikes across the crosswalk. If your child rides a bike or skateboards to school, make sure they wear a helmet," said Salinas.

An important tip to remember is that all drivers should reduce distractions inside your vehicle to help concentrate on the road and watch for children. Also, using a cell phone in a school zone is against the law.

"Some commanders and First Shirts will be out there the first couple days of school to help children get to school safely and also help remind drivers to be aware of the transition of kids going back to school," said Salinas. "The goal of every Team Holloman member should be that the first, second and all the way to the last day of school that children make it to and from school safely."

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