Tips for drivers, walkers as Delaware schools open doors

By Glenn Rolfe
Posted 9/6/21

GEORGETOWN — The Georgetown Police Department is calling on its community and others for increased attention while driving as the school year begins.

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Tips for drivers, walkers as Delaware schools open doors

Posted

GEORGETOWN — The Georgetown Police Department is calling on its community and others for increased attention while driving as the school year begins.

Mornings and afternoons in Georgetown and across Delaware will find streets busier with both vehicle and pedestrian traffic, according to Detective Joey Melvin, school resource officer and spokesman for the Georgetown Police Department.

“The Indian River School District has over 300 student walkers, and drivers need to be aware of our student walkers and be vigilant when traveling the roadways,” he said. “It’s also vital for our student walkers to be safe when crossing the roads.”

Indian River’s start to its full-week, in-person school year begins Tuesday for students in kindergarten and grades 6 and 9, as well as Howard T. Ennis School pupils (excluding preschool).

Students in grades 1-5, 7-8 and 10-12 return to school Wednesday. Preschool programs, including Project V.I.L.L.A.G.E., TOTS and Howard T. Ennis, will begin Monday.

The Georgetown Police Department offers the following tips to ensure the safety of all:

  • Parents should walk their child’s route each year to determine any changes or hazards.
  • Walkers should make sure to use crosswalks, stand at the corner of the intersection and look both ways before crossing. If no crosswalks are provided, they should always walk facing traffic, watch for turning vehicles and make sure vehicles come to a complete stop before crossing.
  • Walkers should never enter a street between parked cars due to limited visibility, and they should walk far enough in front of stopped vehicles that they are seen. Students should make sure to walk, not run, while crossing streets.
  • Parents could add bright or reflective items to a child’s backpack to help increase visibility.
  • Drivers need to take extra time and precaution to ensure the safety of student walkers. Motorists should slow down and make sure to be alert and patient, not only in school zones but at intersections, medians and curbs where students may travel to or from school.
  • Drivers should be prepared for children to enter roadways and leave plenty of space when stopped near crosswalks, so other drivers can see any approaching pedestrians.
  • Motorists are encouraged to be patient when other vehicles are stopped for pedestrians and to not pass those vehicles.
  • In conjunction with state law, drivers should not be talking on cellphones or texting while driving.
  • Also, be alert for an increase in bicyclists. To prevent collisions, drivers should anticipate bicyclists who may not follow the rules of the road.