Seattle schools start Wednesday September 4, 2019 for grades 1-12 and Monday September 9, 2019 for kindergartners. This is just a reminder that you need to slow down when driving around school zones and around children walking on streets starting next week. For some children, this is the first time they have gone to school and the chaos of all the new children they get to meet and cars picking them up or dropping them off for school may confuse children so drive slow in case one darts out into the street.
We make 20 mph speed limits in school zones so people can safely stop when an unexpected child runs out into the middle of the street because they were chasing a ball, running to their parents, or playing tag. Children in grade school, especially, are learning basic life skills and may not be aware of the true dangers of walking or running around busy school streets.
Seattle has so many school zones that you may miss them if you are driving in an area that you are not familiar with. This could lead to a $234 ticket by camera or by police officer, if you are driving over 20mph while the flashing lights are on or children are present.
According to the Seattle school districts website, School zone cameras and flashing warning signals generally start 40 minutes before a school starts and lasts until about 10 minutes after school is to start. Additionally, the school zone cameras and warning signals start 10 minutes before school gets out and ends 30 minutes after school ends.
For the 2019-2020 school year, grades 1-5 start at 7:55am and go until 2:25pm. However, on Wednesdays, schools have early releases at 1:10. This means that school zone cameras will probably be in force from 7:15am to 8:05 am for the morning and between 2:15pm to 2:55pm after school, most days. However, 20 mph flashing signals will most likely be flashing indicating you must slow down during these times as well.
Most Seattle middle schools and high schools will go from 8:55am-3:45pm and getting out at 2:30 on early dismissal Wednesdays. This means that school zone cameras will probably be in force from 8:05am to 9:05am for the morning and between 3:35pm to 4:15pm after school, most days. For a complete list of school schedules, check out the Seattle school districts site here.
No one wants to see their child or anyone else’s child hit by a car. There is no more of a horrific scene than to see your young, innocent loved one struck by a car. Car accidents are devastating events that are easily preventable with care and attention for those around you. Drive safely and anticipate others. Drive slow in school zones for your children and other children’s safety and well being.