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Saskatoon drivers reminded to put safety first in school zones

As school is getting back into full swing for thousands of students and teachers across the province, police and SGI want drivers to get a passing grade when driving through school zones.

In addition to the risks posed to kids, violations in these zones carry a hefty price tag and it’s not just speeding that is being watched closely.

“The idea is to change that driver behaviour because the little ones that are running around school zones aren’t paying attention to traffic and to people that are driving, they’re excited to come to school,” Saskatoon Police Service Sgt. Ken Kane said.

While classrooms and hallways get used to the increased activity for another school year, it was also busy outside of the schools and police are hoping to put drivers to the test in the name of safety.

Fines for school zone speeding violations “start at $250 dollars and it’s $2 more for every kilometre over that, so they are expensive,” Kane says.

Speed limits are 30 kilometres per hour in elementary school zones from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. High school zones have signage posted indicating it’s a school zone, but the speed limit is different at 50 kph per hour.

Police are hoping that drivers see the signs and slow to the appropriate speed around high schools.

There are a few rules specific to school zones, including no U-turns.

“There’s no stopping or parking in designated crosswalks or in wheelchair parking or in back alleys,” Jacquie Cuthbert, with Saskatoon Public Schools said in a news conference Tuesday.

Students who walk to school are also reminded of pedestrian rules like using designated crosswalks and avoiding darting out between cars. For those students biking to school, there are also rules to brush up on.

“We want to make sure that their helmets fit properly, and they have a bell or are using hand signals,” Cuthbert says.

Kids 13 and under which includes most elementary students, can legally ride on the sidewalk. For those who ride on the road – they are to stay to the far right of the lane.

Saskatoon Police Service members will be out for the next few weeks, patrolling school zones while everyone transitions into a new school year. Top Stories

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