Lacombe police remind drivers to be extra vigilant as students head back to school

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The Lacombe Police Service (LPS) reminds residents that with the start of the new school year drivers, pedestrians, parents, students, passengers and cyclists need to be vigilant when it comes to traffic safety.

Motorists need to pay extra attention to school buses and pedestrian traffic coming and going from the bus. The most common offence motorists commit is “failing to stop for a school bus” and this can result in a fine upon conviction. The fine for this offence is $543 and six demerit points.

LPS recommends the following tips for motorists when approaching a school bus that is preparing to stop:

  • When approaching the bus from the opposite direction, ensure that you stop at a safe distance away from the front of the bus.
  • When approaching the bus from behind, we recommend that you stop at least 20 metres away from the back of the bus.
  • Once the lights have stopped flashing and the safety arm folds away and the bus begins to move, it is safe to continue driving.

Motorists must also remember to obey the posted speed limit in school zones, which is 30 km per hour. School zone hours are in effect weekdays from:

  • 8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
  • 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
  • 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The fines for speeding in a school zone start at $78, and the amount increases for every kilometre over the posted speed limit.

“It’s the time of year when we need to be extra vigilant,” said Cst. Vaughan Bleasdale. “We need to remember to expect the unexpected when driving in school zones and our neighborhoods as kids are excited and trying to get back into the routine of things as well.”