Nearly 2,000 students will be heading back to Newport schools next Tuesday morning. Many will be very excited with the new school year with one thought in mind– get to school! Safety is not always top of mind with students. For that reason, drivers must be prepared for the unexpected. Watch out for the kids. State laws and local ordinances have been enacted for the safety of the children. Here’s the main ones:
* School zones adjacent to schools are active from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on school days. The speed limit in school zones is 20 miles per hour.
* School zones not directly near a school are active “When Children are Present”. The speed limit in these school zones is also 20 miles per hour. Drivers must be very careful in these school zones because a child’s presence anywhere in the zone area requires reduction of speed to 20 MPH.
* Crosswalks in school zones differ from regular crosswalks. A school crosswalk means that if there is anyone, anywhere in the crosswalk, motorists may not drive over the crosswalk.
* New this year, NE Eads Street in front of the Newport High School will be closed to traffic from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on school days. The closure is between NE 3rd Street and NE 4th Street. This street closure is for the safety of the students crossing between the buildings at various times during the school day.
* Parents are reminded that children under the age of 16 are required to wear helmets when riding bicycles and skateboards.
From Chief Miranda: “Children are our future and we need to watch out for them and protect them, so everyone, please drive safely!”