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Front Page » October 13, 2009 » Emery County News » Walk to school day
Published 1,773 days ago

Walk to school day


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By PATSY STODDARD
Editor

Some Emery County schools along with other Utah schools and schools throughout the nation participated in International Walk to School Day on Oct. 7.

On this morning students who normally ride the bus to school were dropped off at various points along the way and walked to school.

In Cleveland students were dropped off at the cemetery and the church.

In Huntington the students were dropped off at the church and along Main Street. The students were accompanied to school by teachers who walked with them along the designated routes.

In Castle Dale, principal Ralph Worthen met students at the Castle Dale City Hall and then walked to school with them.

With children out and about it's important to remember safety rules when it comes to walking and biking. Drivers need to be on the alert too, for children who make sudden moves either on foot or on a bike.

Amy Hill is a crossing guard at Huntington Elementary along the busy Main Street. She said there are a number of problems that people need to be alert to when it comes to the safety of the children crossing these busy roads. All children are encouraged to come to the crosswalk to cross and not cross at other points along Main Street. In Huntington, school begins at 8:15 a.m. and students are encouraged not to come to school before 7:30 a.m. because the crossing guard starts at 7:30 a.m. "If students cross before 7:30 a.m. their safety cannot be guaranteed," said Hill.

"Please have children walk their bikes across the streets. They should not get back on their bikes until they are on the sidewalk as some cars will try to hug the side of the street next to the sidewalk when making a right turn and if the kids stop on the road to get back on their bikes they could get hit. Children should not follow the crossing guard out into the highway. They should wait until I signal them it's OK to cross. We encourage children to slow down when the weather is wet and sloppy. We want them to walk across the crosswalk and not run when it's slippery.

"We have been having trouble with loose dogs following kids to school. Please make sure your dog is properly restrained at home, so they don't cause problems with traffic and at school. These loose dogs can be taken to the pound.

"We have been having trouble with motorists speeding in the school zone. The speed limit is 20 mph. Several tickets have been given, but people just remember to slow down and watch out for the children. Slow down, speeding can kill an innocent child. We encourage cars to stop well before the intersection and not block the intersection. Remain stopped until the students have left the crosswalk and the crossing guard has put down her sign. Do not roll into the intersection as kids are crossing. Please wait for them to cross completely.

"We want to thank everyone for following the rules and practicing safety," said Hill.

The Utah Department of Transportation through its Student Neighborhood Access Program encourages parents to take the opportunity to talk about safe walking and biking practices with their children.

Safe walking and biking tips parents can review with their children include the following: Ask a school administrator for a copy of your school's safe routes map, or SNAP Map.

Walk with friends or parent. Walk on the sidewalk. Walk your bike or scooter through crosswalks. Cross the street where a crossing guard is present or at a marked crosswalk. When crossing the street, look left, look right and left again for cars.

Never walk or ride with headphones. They can keep you from hearing traffic. Wear bright colored clothing or tie a bright handkerchief around your backpack to make it easier for traffic to see you.

Always wear a safety-certified helmet when riding a bicycle and make sure it fits properly.

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