November 23, 2020

Sheriff Ross Henry reminds everyone of Back to School Safety Tips

“It’s that time of the year again – time to hang up the bathing suits and our lazy days of summer and get in gear for a terrific school year. I hope that all of you had a great summer. Now, that we are about to begin a new school year, I want to take this opportunity to remind parents and students of a few safety rules.”~ Sheriff Ross Henry.

School Bus Safety

  • Get out of bed on time so you don’t have to rush to the bus stop
  • Arrive at the bus stop five minutes early
  • Stand about 5 giant steps (@10 ft.) away from the roadway
  • Wait until the bus completely stops and the door opens before going towards the bus
  • Walk- don’t run to the bus
  • Use the hand rails when entering or exiting the bus
  • If you have to cross in front of the bus to get on, don’t walk directly in front of the bus- make sure you are about 5 giant steps if front of the bus so the driver can safely see you
  • Look both ways before you cross the street
  • Never walk behind the school bus
  • Never fight, push or shove others while waiting in line
  • Keep feet, books, lunch boxes & book bags out of the aisle
  • Talk quietly to others while on the bus
  • Keep hands and head inside the bus
  • Remain seated while the bus is moving
  • Do not distract the bus driver by yelling or screaming
  • Know where the emergency exit door and windows are located
  • Always obey the bus driver

Walking to School

  • Plan the shortest and safest route to walk to school
  • Walk with a friend or someone you know. Never walk alone
  • Do not stop at vacant lots, houses or to talk with strangers
  • Do not take a ride from a stranger
  • Do not wear headphones, i-pods, or use cell phones while walking to school
  • Be mindful of all traffic
  • Obey all traffic signs and signals as they pertain to pedestrians

Student Drivers

  • Always, always – buckle up!!!!!!!
  • Make sure all passengers are wearing their seatbelts and smaller children are properly restrained (booster seats, car seats)
  • Obey all traffic laws, traffic signs and signals
  • Parents need to know who their child is transporting to and from school
  • Parents need to know their child’s route to and from school. In case there is an emergency, parents will know where to find their children
  • Know what time school is dismissed and the expected arrival time home for your child
  • Drivers need to not only pay attention to their driving, but also pay attention to other drivers & pedestrians
  • Know who your passengers are
  • Do not use your cell phones while operating a motor vehicle. This means do not read or send text messages and do not call anyone or answer any incoming calls.

Parents please keep in mind the facts below when or if your child or children must be left at home alone at any time to include before and/or after school:

  • Make sure your children are old enough or mature enough to be home alone and can be trusted.
  • Teach basic safety rules to them
  • Leave emergency contact numbers for the children
  • Make sure your child knows how and when to dial 9-1-1 and can give directions to your home in the event of an emergency.
  • Teach children to use the door and window locks and how to use/set the alarm system
  • Make sure your children know what activities are allowed while they are home alone.
  • Make sure your child(ren) know not to let strangers in the house or to tell someone they don’t know, that they are home alone

Over 20 million school aged children ride the school bus to and from school each day. Of these children, over 150 students are killed and 13,000 are injured each year as a result of school bus related accidents.

Stats related to teenage drivers show at this time that teens are seven percent of georgia’s total population and teens are 14 percent of all crash deaths. One out of every five of these crashes are speed related and one out of every three are alcohol related.

Four out of ten crashes occurred on rural roads with eight out of ten occurring on non-interstate roadways.

“I know that we run these safety tips in the papers each school year, but I believe everyone needs a little reminder every now and again. I encourage all parents to sit down a few minutes and remind your children of these safety tips. If we all follow these simple rules and obey all traffic laws, we can make everyone’s daily travels safe and enjoyable,” stated Sheriff Henry.

“I encourage each and every one of our students to take their educations seriously. Obtaining a great education is a major stepping stone in your futures. With all the corruption in other school districts in the state of Georgia, I am so proud of the group of educators we have in heard county and thank each of them for their sincere dedication to their profession and to our students,” added Sheriff Henry.


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