Police launch Project Safe Start for Back to School: August 29, 2016

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As the summer winds down and parents are counting down the days till their children return to school, Halton Regional Police are looking forward to a safe start to the school year.

The ninth annual Project Safe Start will run between Monday, August 29 to Tuesday, September 13, 2016. The focus of this traffic campaign is to educate and remind everyone to take extra care when driving, as well as to look out for children in school zones, residential areas, playgrounds and parks.

Halton Regional Police’s goal is to raise awareness about how to keep our children safe on the roads through high-visibility enforcement of traffic laws in and around school zones throughout Halton Region.

To keep children safe while heading to and from school it is important to remember the five Safe Start “S’s”:

  1. Safe speeds – Watch for the flashing 40km/h zones. Motorists are required to slow down where school zone signs are posted. Fines increase within many of these zones within Halton Region.
  2. Seatbelts – Drivers and passengers should always buckle up on every trip. Seat belt use saves lives and reduces injuries in motor vehicle collisions.
  3. School zones and school buses – Slow down and take extra care to look out for children in school zones and residential areas. Red flashing lights and an extended stop sign arm signals that the school bus is stopped and traffic in *both directions* are required to stop for students entering or exiting a school bus.
  4. Stop signs – Motorists must come to a complete stop at a red stop sign. Allow time to stop, think, observe and proceed.
  5. Safe operation – Distracted driving is dangerous. Motorists should follow the rules of the road and operate their vehicles safely. Drive now and text later!

School zones should be safe zones. Enforcement will be on speeders, aggressive drivers, and the use of hand held devices while driving. Seatbelt compliance will also be strictly enforced. Frontline officers, District Response officers, Education Services officers, High School Liaison officers and Senior Command officers will all be taking part in this campaign.

On Thursday, September 8, 2016, Senior Officers, Specialist Units, Divisional Commanders and Police Executive officers will participate in the “All Hands on Deck” component of Project Safe Start.

This high visibility enforcement and education campaign will positively affect driver behaviour around school zones throughout the year and have overall lasting safety benefits to members of the community.

Halton residents have ranked traffic concerns as their #1 policing priority in surveys. Halton Regional Police Service recognizes this concern and engages in various campaigns throughout the year in efforts to educate the public and enforce the Highway Traffic Act and other traffic related legislation.

Pedestrians, cyclists, motorists and police all play an integral role in ensuring safer roads within the Halton Region. We ask that everyone do their part in ensuring our Region’s children return to school safely.

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