How can you make your neighborhood streets safer?
As a driver: Drive Slower
The maximum legal speed on a residential street is 25 MPH (unless otherwise posted). Driving at a speed of 25 MPH or less gives you more time to react to the unexpected, such as a child darting out from between parked cars or to a car backing out of the driveway. Unless you are consciously aware of your speed, you may be driving faster than you should on a residential street.
Remind neighbors to drive 25 MPH. Make sure that others who use your vehicle drive 25 MPH. Driving at a lower, more responsible speed on residential streets has very little effect on the time it will take you to get to your destination. Besides, IT IS THE LAW.
Avoid Using Neighborhood Streets as Short Cuts
The more we use residential streets as short cuts, the more we disrupt the quality of life in neighborhoods. Neighborhood cut-through traffic increases noise and pollution in residential areas and results in a greater threat to the safety of children.
Observe the Rules of the Road
Don't take chances, even on short trips. Statistics show that most accidents occur close to home. In particular, make sure that you and all your passengers always buckle up.
Changing Your Driving Patterns on Residential Streets
Learn to adopt a different attitude! You should expect the unexpected, especially on residential streets. It may not be your fault if you have an accident, but imagine the pain you would be living with were you to injure a child or an elderly pedestrian. Yield to pedestrians. Crosswalks exist at every intersection whether or not they have been painted on the street.
As a parent:
Ensure that your children know and understand the rules of the road. Children are the primary pedestrians on residential streets. Children are the most likely victims of careless drivers.
Studies have shown that younger children have difficulty making safe judgments about traffic dangers. Do not let your children play in the street. Warn them about darting into the road after pets or toys. Select bright clothing for children who will be near traffic. Teach your children to stop, look both ways, and listen before crossing the street. Make sure that even though cars are supposed to stop, they may not.
Set a good example. Drive the speed limit. Be a courteous driver. Let children off on the correct side of the road when delivering or picking them up from school. Ensure that your kids are equipped with a safety helmet when riding their bikes.
One of the most frequent contributing factors in fatal crashes is speed - not simply speeding at more than the legal speed limit, but speeding too fast for prevailing conditions, which include the road, weather, light, traffic, and the vehicle and its driver.
Do not rush while driving. Be organized and leave a little earlier. In particular, do not rush getting children to and from school. Your urgency may cause them to disregard traffic safety and run headlong into the street.
Get involved and do your part to improve traffic safety!