School Zones

School zones are areas within the vicinity of schools and other educational establishments where school children and young pedestrians are likely to be present in high numbers. School zones will often incorporate reduced speed limits for certain times of the day.

School zones are likely to have appropriate road signs (often incorporating flashing beacons for conspicuity) and markings to make motorists aware of the presence of vulnerable road users such as young pedestrians and bicyclists. Parking restrictions may also apply in school zones.

A school zone crossing supervisor may also be present to assist children when crossing roads on their way to and from school. Crossing supervisors often operate during the school community's peak demand period both in the morning and in the afternoon to temporarily stop vehicular traffic at crossing points to give priority to pedestrians whilst crossing the road. Actual operating times depend on a number of factors that include school start times, pedestrian access and traffic volumes. Also referred to as a school crossing patrol.

  • School zones and crossing supervisors can reduce pedestrian risk.
  • School zones help to moderate traffic speeds which can reduce injury severity.
  • It has been shown that school zones can reduce crashes involving bicyclists.
  • School crossing supervisors can help to control pedestrian crossing movements.
  • School crossing supervisors provide a safe place to cross.
  • Traffic signs and road markings must make it clear to motorists that they have entered a school zone.
  • Consider incorporating flashing beacons to compliment the school zone signs and markings.
  • Operating times and any speeds limit changes must be clearly signed and understood.
  • Through traffic must be able to see pedestrian crossing points in time to stop for them.
  • Advanced warning signs should be located on approaches with adequate forward visibility.
  • Parking provision should be carefully considered within school zones with adequate sight distances at pedestrian crossings.

Benefits

  • School zones and crossing supervisors can reduce pedestrian risk.
  • School zones help to moderate traffic speeds which can reduce injury severity.
  • It has been shown that school zones can reduce crashes involving bicyclists.
  • School crossing supervisors can help to control pedestrian crossing movements.
  • School crossing supervisors provide a safe place to cross.

Implementation issues

  • Traffic signs and road markings must make it clear to motorists that they have entered a school zone.
  • Consider incorporating flashing beacons to compliment the school zone signs and markings.
  • Operating times and any speeds limit changes must be clearly signed and understood.
  • Through traffic must be able to see pedestrian crossing points in time to stop for them.
  • Advanced warning signs should be located on approaches with adequate forward visibility.
  • Parking provision should be carefully considered within school zones with adequate sight distances at pedestrian crossings.

Did you know?

In March 2010 the United Nations General Assembly resolution proclaimed a Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020.

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