Back to School Safety Tips from TPD

Tyler Police Department reminds you that our local public schools are back in session this Monday and most private schools have already started. Our goal is to help keep our kids safe, here are a few reminders about safety tips for children returning to school.

School Zones :  Last school year officers issued 2,585 citations for speeding in a school zone and 626 citations for cell phone usage in a school zone.

*   Be alert for the school zone signs posted near schools.

*   Keep alert for the children and the crossing guards as they make their way across the street.

*   Slow down and prepare to stop if the crossing guard so indicates.

*   Tyler motorcycle officers will be monitoring school zones throughout the City when school starts.

*   It is illegal to use a wireless communication device in a school zone unless the vehicle is stopped or a hands-free device is used.

Riding the Bus

*   Have a safe place to wait for your bus, away from traffic and the street.
*   Stay away from the bus until it comes to a complete stop and the driver signals you to enter.
*   When being dropped off, exit the bus and walk ten giant steps away from the bus. Keep a safe distance between you and the bus. Also, remember that the bus driver can see you best when you are back away from the bus.
*   Use the handrail to enter and exit the bus.
*   Stay away from the bus until the driver gives his/her signal that it's okay to approach.
*   Be aware of the street traffic around you. Drivers are required to follow certain rules of the road concerning school buses, however, not all do. Protect yourself and watch out!
*   Drivers must stop for all red flashing lights on bus in both directions unless on a divided highway.

Walking and Biking to School
Even if you don't ride in a motor vehicle, you still have to protect yourself. Because of minimal supervision, young pedestrians face a wide variety of decisions making situations and dangers while walking to and from school. Here are a few basic safety tips to follow:

*   Mind all traffic signals and/or the crossing guard -- never cross the street against a light, even if you don't see any traffic coming.
*   Always walk on sidewalks (where provided), otherwise walk facing traffic.
*   Walk your bike through intersections.
*   Walk with a buddy.
*   Wear reflective makes you more visible to street traffic.
*   Never run out from between cars

Riding in a Car

*   You might have heard before that most traffic crashes occur close to home ... they do.
*   Safety belts are the best form of protection passengers have in the event of a crash. They can lower your risk of injury by 45%.
*   You are four times more likely to be seriously injured or killed if ejected from the vehicle in a crash.
*   Everyone needs to be buckled up properly. That means older kids in seat belts, younger kids in booster seats and little kids in child safety seats. All passengers front and back in a passenger vehicle, must wear a seat belt.
*   Always let your child out at the curb. Don't double park when dropping off or picking up.
*   No persons under the age of 18 are allowed to ride in the bed of a pick-up.

Stranger Danger

*   Teach your children not to talk with strangers.

*   Don't approach a motor vehicle for someone asking directions or attempting to give you candy.

*   Remember as much of the license plate as possible and color of vehicle.

*   Scream, kick, bite, do whatever is necessary to get away from the stranger.