OUR VIEWS: Slow down and watch out

Jun 19, 2012

That’s fantastic news for the thousands of youngsters across the Tri-Cities who get to trade in their backpacks, binders and boxes of crayons for bikes, skateboards and Rollerblades.

That also creates quite a challenge for drivers.

When the final school bell of the year rings, young kids flood the sidewalks and streets. Instead of working on algebra equations or studying up on U.S. history, kids are now biking to the nearest fishing hole or riding their longboards downtown to hang out with their friends.

Drivers must be aware of this change. Those streets and bike paths that were sleepy and serene during the school year are now bustling with activity. That can make the simplest task — from backing out of your driveway to making a right turn at a busy intersection — tricky.

It’s obviously the responsibility of those on the sidewalks and bike paths to act responsibly, but that isn’t always the case.

That means responsibility also falls upon us as operators of motor vehicles to keep our eyes peeled and our senses tuned in to the foot and bike traffic all around us.

Sure, Andy Williams tells us that Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, but those youngsters who have spent the past nine months cooped up in school would argue that the few short months of summer are a close second.

Let’s keep it that way by being diligent when we get behind the wheel. Watch out for the young people who have spilled from the classrooms into the streets.
 

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