As thousands of Manitoba children head back to class today, CAA and the Winnipeg police are reminding motorists to use extra precaution around school zones.
Increased child pedestrian activity and traffic congestion in and around neighborhoods and school zones is a recipe for disaster if you aren’t careful. With more than half of all students in elementary school, typically age 14 and younger, CAA warns motorists to be especially cautious and alert during the morning and afternoon hours.
“Kids are unpredictable to motorists on the best of days — darting into traffic and often failing to look both ways before crossing the street,” said Liz Peters of CAA Manitoba. “Add to that the fact that going back to school, kids are with friends and going to be excited, and drivers definitely will need to have a heightened sense of awareness as they pass through school zones.”
Peters says to look for the CAA School Safety Patrollers. With more than 10,000 patrollers at more than 275 schools in Manitoba, they’re a sure sign you’re approaching a school zone.
CAA Manitoba is also making it more safe for adults in a new program set to launch later today. The “Drive You Home” service allows members to call roadside assistance to drive them home in the event they’re ill, been in an accident or are impaired after a night out. The goal of the program is similar to the annual Operation Red Nose campaign, but will operate year-round. The service can be used once per year as part of the four annually-allotted service calls members can make.
There’s been another accident on Manitoba roads involving a school bus — this time, in the RM of Taché.
Police say a 1999 Pontiac Grand Am was travelling north on Gendron Road near the intersection of PR 405 at about 9 a.m. Thursday. The male driver attempted to pass a southbound school bus, when he noticed an oncoming northbound school bus. The driver of the Grand Am ended up in the ditch trying to avoid a head-on collision. The southbound school bus was rear-ended by a 2006 Chevrolet Silverado during the commotion, as foggy conditions were present at the time.
The occupants of the Grand Am — a 17-year-old driver and 15-year-old passenger — were not injured. The 53-year-old male driver of the Silverado was not injured, nor were the two teenagers and three adults in the school bus.
The driver of the Grand Am has been charged with passing without having a clear view.
A school bus was involved in a crash at approximately 8:25 a.m. Wednesday when a Chevrolet Alero collided into the side of it.
The accident happened about 3 miles north of Neepawa on Highway 5 at the intersection of a gravel road in the RM of Rosedale.
RCMP say heavy fog and poor visibility were reported at the time.
No word yet on any injuries, as police continue to investigate.
UPDATE: 13 children were on board at the time and were taken to hospital as a precaution. None of them were injured. The driver of the vehicle, a 50-year-old woman from Winnipegosis, was taken to Neepawa Hospital, then transferred to the Health Sciences Centre. Her condition isn’t known. The male driver of the bus was not injured.
UPDATE #2: March 4 — The driver of the Alero has succumbed to her injuries. Her name is not being released.