School has started and youngsters will be out and about, so drive safely

Tuesday marked the official beginning for most schools in Newberg and with that start comes a return to kids traversing the town via roads and streets. That also means that motorists, bicyclists, motorcycle riders and the like, more than ever, need to pay close attention and obey the traffic laws because there is no room for error when it comes to hard metal and precious children.

Our hope is also that parents treat the start of school as an opportunity to teach, or at least remind, their children of proper behavior when walking or bicycling to school, as well as riding a school bus.Sept. 4 editorial

Still, kids being kids, it’s up to the adult behind the wheel to safeguard our youngest citizens. While it seems like that should be simple, for whatever reason today’s drivers have way too many distractions and often play fast and loose with traffic laws. They text and talk on cell phones while driving (both illegal), munch on breakfast and hold drinks between their knees as they attempt to pilot their vehicles down the road. Plainly put, people need to stop treating their vehicles like homes and get on with the task of driving.

And what better time to make a change toward being a safer driver than the start of school? In the mornings and afternoon, thousands of youths will be traveling to and from school on foot, on bicycles and on school buses. They will be exposed and vulnerable to poor drivers, distracted drivers or drivers who just aren’t paying attention.

And, unfortunately, when a bad driver meets a distracted kid the results will oftentimes end up in this newspaper. We’d rather print the positive things these students are doing, not the injuries, or worse, they’ve suffered because a driver wasn’t using the proper amount of caution.

Be careful out there, drivers.

Contract Publishing

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