In our opinion: Drivers, kids' lives in your hands
School is back in session, take extra care driving in the community
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.
Still, kids being kids, its up to the adult behind the wheel to safeguard our youngest citizens. While it seems like that should be simple, for whatever reason todays 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 arent paying attention.
And, unfortunately, when a bad driver meets a distracted kid the results will oftentimes end up in this newspaper.
Wed rather print the positive things these students are doing, not the injuries, or worse, theyve suffered because a driver wasnt using the proper amount of caution.
And if you, as a driver, are unsure of what the rules are concerning pedestrians and kids on bicycles, stop by DMV locations in Sherwood or McMinnville and refamiliarize yourself with the rules of the road. That info just might save the life of a youth. Be careful out there, drivers.