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Ramped up enforcement, tips to handle the unofficial fall traffic jam

(Sonia Aslam, NEWS 1130 Photo)

Speeding in a school zone could set you back as much as $483

ICBC says, on average, 72 kids are injured in school and playground zone crashes every year

VANCOUVER (NEWS 11300 – This week will see the return of everything getting back to normal — kids are in school and you’re back at work, but that also means more cars on the road. And there are a few reasons that lead to an increased number of crashes during the first full week of September.

Unfortunately, it’s the same offences we always tell you about. Distracted driving and things like speeding in school zones.

Enforcement is being ramped up across the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Police Acting Sergeant Brian Montague is promising, if you’re caught you will be handed a ticket. “I think drivers are playing a risky game by doing that on the roads, especially in a school zone. We’ll have extra officers keeping an eye out, reminding people there is zero tolerance for that sort of behaviour.”

Fines for drivers caught speeding in school zones range from $196 to $483 and despite repeated warnings and campaigns people continue to lay on the pedal. “It takes two seconds to lose focus and hit a child or pedestrian which will, not only, change their life forever but that of the driver. Unfortunately, it happens. And you would think people would know to slow down — but every year it’s clear some don’t. We’re asking people to slow down and think twice,” adds Montague.

ICBC says every year, 72 kids are injured in crashes in school and playground zones. Monday to Friday, unless it says otherwise, it’s a 30km/h zone from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Tips for drivers
*When you’re dropping off children in school zones, have them get out on the side closest to the sidewalk
*If a vehicle’s stopped in front of you or in the lane next to you, they may be yielding to a pedestrian, so proceed with caution and be prepared to stop
*Watch for school buses: cars approaching from both directions must stop for school buses when their lights are flashing
*Before getting into your car, walk around it to make sure no small children are hidden from your view and always look for pedestrians when reversing