CAA urges motorists and pedestrians to avoid dangerous behaviour in school zones as kids head back to school

Recent survey shows that two in five parents have witnessed or experienced an incident
in a school zone and almost one-third of parents consider school zones to be unsafe

THORNHILL, ON, Aug. 31, 2017 /CNW/ - CAA South Central Ontario (CAA SCO) is reminding the public to take extra care, be patient and avoid distractions in school zones as students head back to the classroom this fall.

The school safety reminder comes on the heels of a recent survey conducted for CAA SCO by Ipsos, which shows that about one-third of parents consider school zones to be unsafe. These perceptions do not seem to be driven by their child's age, the living area or the school infrastructure, but rather by traffic volume and dangerous driving behaviour. Two in five have witnessed or experienced an incident in a school zone.

"We can often make a daily routine like dropping off and picking up kids at school more stressful than it needs to be," said Elliott Silverstein, manager of government relations at CAA SCO. "We all have a role to play to keep our school zones safe and that starts with having patience, being attentive, and taking the time needed to interact safely in school zones."

The survey shows that the most frequently witnessed dangerous behaviours are adult pedestrians using their cellphones while crossing the street or crossing unsafely at an uncontrolled place midblock, as well as drivers double parking, speeding and stopping in undesignated areas.

The Ipsos survey was completed in April 2017 and engaged 1000 Ontario parents of school-aged children (kindergarten through grade 8).

CAA SCO is reminding drivers to stay alert and remember to:

  • Don't engage in dangerous driving behaviour such as distracted driving, double parking, speeding or stopping in undesignated areas.
  • Don't talk or text on your phone or activities that may take your attention away from the road.
  • Always check for children on the sidewalk, driveway and behind your vehicle before backing up.
  • Slow down and pay extra attention in residential areas and school zones.
  • Be ready to stop at all times as children may dart out between parked vehicles.
  • Come to a complete stop for school buses when red lights are flashing. If you fail to do so, you could face a fine of up to $2,000 and six demerit points.


Keep your eyes out for CAA School Safety Patrollers, who will be back in action at over 800 schools across Ontario to help their classmates get to and from school safely. There are 55 police services and approximately 20,000 elementary school students in Ontario involved in the CAA School Safety Patrol program.

To learn more about school safety, watch these videos on driving your kids to school, sharing the road with school buses and walking to school.

About CAA South Central Ontario
For over a hundred years, CAA has been helping Canadians stay mobile, safe and protected. CAA South Central Ontario is one of nine auto clubs across Canada providing roadside assistance, travel, insurance services and Member savings for our over 2 million Members.

SOURCE CAA South Central Ontario

For further information: Kaitlynn Furse, PR Manager, P: (905) 771-3194, C: (647) 227-7559, E:; Nadia Matos, PR Specialist, P: (905) 771-3058, C: (416) 523-0663, E:


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