Darien’s Chief Osborne shares traffic safety tips for start of the school year

The members of the Darien Police Department would like to remind motorists that the first day of school is Thursday, August 30th. With that date in mind they are providing the following safety tips in an effort to keep children safe as the school year approaches.

Slow Down in School Zones: Speed limits are reduced in school zones for a reason.

Eliminate Distractions: Do not text or use your hand held cell phone while driving. In case you are not aware: texting while stopped at a red light is still a violation.

Parents: Talk to your teen drivers about the dangers of texting and distracted driving. Research indicates that 80% of teen drivers see themselves as safer than average drivers and don’t believe that distracted driving puts them at risk. Please be aware that Connecticut General Statute 14-296aa(d) prohibits persons under the age of 18 to use any handheld mobile telephone, including one with a hands free accessory, on a public highway while operating a vehicle.

Obey the Signals of School Crossing Guards: Connecticut law requires the operator of a vehicle to immediately bring their motor vehicle to a stop when a school crossing guard directs them to do so. Heavy fines and mandatory court appearances will be the result for violations of this statue.

Be Alert for Stopped School Buses: Children are often unpredictable and may ignore hazards and take risks. Always come to a complete stop when a school bus is displaying flashing red lights as students are loading or unloading. Motorists are asked to take extra precautions as students wait for their bus in the morning at various bus stops throughout town and as they exit their bus in the afternoon.