By Jensen, Randy on September 2, 2020.
With school back in full swing, the Lethbridge Police Service is reminding motorists they will be out enforcing speed limits in school zones.
LPS Sgt. Kevin Talbot of the Traffic Response Team said it can be tough for motorists to get back into the school zone frame of mind since schools changed to online learning in March.
“We just want to remind people now that children are back in school there has been an extended time away from school so drivers are probably not as used to seeing the kids out in the school zones,” said Talbot. “We just want to remind everybody to pay attention to young kids that are on their way to school either by walking, riding their bicycles, being dropped off in a vehicle or a bus and just be mindful of the fact that young kids sometimes don’t always pay attention to traffic so take extra precautions to ensure they don’t get injured or killed.”
Distracted driving can also be a concern around school zones with parents making sure their kids are on time and have all the proper equipment including their masks.
“I’m comfortable that our community is going to be mindful of young people going back to school on top of all the other things we have to consider with COVID-19,” said Talbot. “Our community historically has done very well with that but it’s always nice to have a reminder from the police and from the rest of the community that kids are out there again just to be mindful of that.”
Speed limits are in effect from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on school days and LPS will be doing its best to keep motorists aware.
‘We typically will target school zones during school days on the first day of school and will eventually ramp up our photo radar as well,” said Talbot. “We like to spread it across all of the schools that we can. Unfortunately we only have so many resources to draw from so we do our best to hit those areas.
“Some schools have more difficulties than others with traffic issues so we’ll spend some time with those as well. On top of that it’s not only our Traffic Response Unit that is involved in the enforcement aspect of it. Also our patrol team and our school resource officers pay attention to those areas as well.”
– With files from Ian Martens