AAA-Iowa spokesman Mark Peterson says even if classes have resumed, it doesn’t necessarily mean the kids are back in a school building. “These are strange times with the virus and you’re going to find kids in areas where you haven’t seen them before,” Peterson says. “You’ve got to use a little extra caution and be a little more alert, much more so than you have in the past.” Children who are home and learning online could be out on an errand or taking a break and going outside, so Peterson says drivers always need to be on guard.
“Slow down, come to complete stop, eliminate distractions,” Peterson says. “You may even find some school buses going in different routes as some schools will be in session and some won’t. Watch for bicycles and talk to your teens because some of the things that they’re used to they may not be encountering on a regular basis.”
Homeowners can share the message about keeping the streets safe. “We’ve got yard signs out that just say, ‘Slow down, watch for kids,’ that are free at a branch office,” Peterson says. “You can go and just ask for them and you don’t have to be a member. Take it and put it in your front yard so that people will be a little more alert.”
As part of AAA’s annual “School’s Open, Drive Carefully” campaign, motorists are advised to watch for children along their travel routes and to be extremely cautious in neighborhoods and school zones.
(By A. J. Taylor, KIOW, Forest City)