2022-09-09 - Back-to-School Safety

Published on September 9, 2022

Cornwall, ON – The Cornwall Police Service (CPS) is reminding the public that local students have recently returned back to class.

Back-to-school safety is a top priority for CPS and is the focus of our monthly traffic initiative. Throughout September and continuing into the school year, officers will be on the lookout for motorists failing to stop for school buses and crossing guards. Police will also be monitoring school safety zones to deter speeding in these areas while children, cyclists, and pedestrians are present.

This year, motorists will notice that school buses have overhead flashing amber lights, which indicate that the bus is preparing to stop for a pick-up or drop-off. Motorists should slow down and prepare to stop for the school bus. It is dangerous and illegal to fail to stop for a stopped school bus that has its overhead red lights flashing or its stop arm activated. If you are driving behind a stopped school bus, stop at least 20 metres away. If the school bus is facing you, stop at a safe distance from the bus to allow children to get on and off, as well as cross the road at a safe distance.

For roads with a median, you must stop if you are driving in the same direction as the school bus when the bus is stopped and has flashing overhead red lights or its stop arm is activated. Vehicles coming from the opposite direction of the median are not required to stop.

“One of the most common violations we see is drivers failing to stop for school buses, as well as speeding,” said Constable Patrick Depratto of the CPS Traffic Unit. “Officers will have a zero tolerance approach for these infractions. The safety of our students is a priority, and we need all drivers to slow down and pay extra attention to ensure these students make it safely to-and-from school.”

Motorists who fail to stop for a school bus with its upper red lights flashing could be subject to a fine of up to $2000 and six demerit points, while drivers found speeding through school safety zones are subject to a doubled fine.

The CPS would like to wish all students, teachers and parents a safe, healthy and successful academic year for those returning to class.

“A safer Cornwall.”

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