All it takes to reduce your speed in a school zone is an additional 12 seconds of travel time. Twelve seconds - the difference could save a life. As a motorist, you have a responsibility to obey posted limits and drive in a safe and courteous manner.
- Young children tend to think cars can stop instantly.
- Children believe that if they can see your car, you can see them.
- Children under 10 do not accurately judge vehicle speed or distance.
- Vehicle-pedestrian accidents involving children tend to result in serious injury, even death.
The maximum speed limit in a school zone is 30 kph and is designed to give motorists and pedestrians more time to react in an emergency. Following this simple rule within a school zone can help you avoid a tragedy.
What you need to know:
- The 30 kph speed limit is in effect from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday to Friday, September to June – including statutory holidays.
- School zones are marked by reflective, fluorescent yellow-green signs.
- School zones begin at the 30 kph sign and end at a sign indicating a greater speed limit (normally 50 kph
- The penalty for speeding in a school zone is the same as any other speeding offence. You would be fined for the offence and penalized three SGI demerit points.
It is important to note that the roll out signs placed in the middle of the road or on the sidewalk closer to schools are not the start and end points of the school zone. Usually these signs are placed in an area inside the school zone
Drop-off and Pick-up Zone
Parking in school zones is prohibited in designated areas, which are typically located close to entrances and exits so that children who are entering or leaving the school can see and be seen by other motorists.
Due to increased congestion and parking issues around schools throughout Saskatoon, the City of Saskatoon in partnership with the Public and Catholic School Boards and the Saskatoon Police Services has been developing solutions to combat these growing concerns.
As a pilot program, the City will be installing new signage at Silverspring School to denote a drop-off and pick-up zone. This area is only to be used for immediate loading or unloading of passengers. This area is not intended as a waiting area to park and wait for your child. Instead please park in a designated parking area to wait until your child is ready to be picked up.
Proper procedure to using this area:
Drop-off - At drop-off have your child ready to exit the vehicle when you have pulled up to the curb. Come to a complete stop and have your child exit the vehicle on curbside only. Drive away from the zone once your child is safely out of the vehicle. Please do not wait to watch your child enter the school. If your child needs assistance going in and out of a vehicle or needs to be walked into the school, please park in a designated parking area. Do not exit your vehicle at any time.
Pick-up - At pick-up your child should be standing at the pick-up zone ready to enter the vehicle. Remind your child to stay safely back from the road and to only enter the vehicle from curbside. Again, this area is not intended to wait for your child, as even a short wait can create traffic congestion.
The drop-off and pick-up zone should be kept clear at all times and only used for its intended purpose. Failure to do so can result in frustrated drivers and children who are not exiting or entering curbside being placed in an unsafe situation.
Restricted U-Turns in School Zones
Responding to a campaign from the school boards and concerned citizens to have u-turns in school zones restricted, City Administration recommended a bylaw amendment prohibiting u-turns in school zones, which council approved at their July 19, 2013 meeting.
The fine for violating this restriction is $50 and enforcement is handled by the Saskatoon Police Service.
Why restrict u-turns in school zones?
The best way to keep children safe in a school zone is to maximize visibility, ensuring that each child can see and be seen by drivers in the area.
If a vehicle is performing a u-turn, children who are walking, running and playing in the area may not anticipate the change in direction. Similarly, as you are performing a u-turn your blind spots change and you may not be able to see what is happening in the area outside of their vehicle.