AAA reminds motorists to watch for students

AAA reminds motorists to watch for students As students across the state return to school, AAA South Dakota reminds motorists to slow down and watch out for school-age pedestrians.

"Children get caught up in the excitement of going back to school, seeing their friends and entering a new grade � and they forget to look out for cars," said Cheri Cihak, AAA South Dakota spokeswoman. "Plus, many youngsters have trouble making accurate judgments about traffic speed and distance, so drivers have to be particularly aware."

One-fifth of all children 14 years of age and younger who die in motor vehicle crashes nationwide are pedestrians, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. These pedestrian fatalities are more likely to happen in the afternoon when school is letting out, but mornings can be hectic, dangerous times, too.

School-age children are especially vulnerable in areas with heavy traffic volume, parked vehicles on the street, higher posted speed limits, and few pedestrian-control devices.

AAA's "School's Open � Drive Carefully" campaign offers drivers tips to help keep school children safe:

* Slow down in or near school and residential areas, and be sure to come to a complete stop at all intersections.

* Always stop for school buses that are loading and unloading students.

, regardless of which direction you are approaching the bus.

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