Back-to-school tips for drivers and pedestrians

Back-to-school tips for drivers and pedestrians

Thousands of students across the Texas Panhandle are preparing to return to school, and the Texas Department of Public Safety is asking everyone to be aware of changing commutes.

Chris Ray from The Department of Public Safety wants drivers to remember that the penalties for passing a school bus are severe and it is highly illegal "Remember those school buses you cannot pass a school bus when those lights are flashing. The penalties are very severe. It could be a class B misdemeanor it can even result in losing your drivers license."

Tips for Drivers:

-Buses make frequent stops in school zones, and when the red lights are turned on drivers must stop. Motorists can resume driving when the bus  resumes motion.
-Keep an eye out for children who may not look for oncoming traffic before crossing a roadway.
-When school zones are active, the speed limit changes to 20 miles per hour. A speeding ticket in a school zone can result in a large fine from city  police.
-Using your cell phone to talk or text in a school zone is illegal.

Tips for Pedestrians:

-Never walk alone -- always travel with someone else. Make a new friend in your neighborhood and walk to the school or bus stop together.
-Respect traffic lights and street signs. Wait for a cross-guard to walk across busy streets, and always look both ways for oncoming traffic.
-If you're riding a bike to school, be sure to wear a helmet. Police also suggest wearing bright or reflective gear and/or clothing during early morning hours  to increase your visibility to motorists.
-When exiting the bus, get off the street and onto the sidewalk as quick as you can.