It’s back to school time – and Sgt. Therese Thompson of the Lemont Police Department is reminding the public of the following laws, which are designed to keep kids safe:
- Drivers coming into a school zone need to remember the speed limit is 20 MPH – and there is a minimum $150 fine for the first violation.
- Any driver, regardless of age, may not use a cell phone at any time while operating a vehicle in a school speed zone.
- All stop signs require a complete stop.
- Pedestrians have the right of way at crosswalks. Keep in mind, student pedestrians/bicyclists are not experienced in judging the speed and distance of oncoming vehicles. They also expect adults to watch out for them, and are fast, smaller and harder to see -- so drivers must stay alert, especially in parking lots.
- Crossing guards are in place to assist children, so obey their direction. On a school day when children are present in the school zone, the penalties are higher for drivers who do not yield the right-of-way at the crosswalk.
- When transporting any child under the age of 8 years of age, the driver is responsible for properly securing the child in the appropriate child restraint system. Youths over the age of 8 and under the age of 19 must be secured by a properly adjusted and fastened seatbelt or an appropriate child restraint system.
- Drivers must stop before passing a school bus with an extended stop signal arm and flashing amber and red lights. (The exception for overtaking a school bus is on a highway of four or more lanes. Then, the driver does not need to stop for a school bus which is stopped on the opposite roadway.)
- Bicyclists must follow the Rules of the Road. Youth on bikes should ride on the right, obey all traffic laws and wear a helmet. Bikes should be locked up.
- When students leave their school at dismissal and walk to business establishments, it is important for their safety that they use crosswalks at intersections, especially when crossing 127th St. or State St.
- Loitering, either alone or in a group, on the public way, places and buildings is prohibited by local ordinance. Any teen that refuses or fails to disperse when instructed by a police officer is also in violation.
In the event of an emergency, call 9-1-1. For non-emergencies, call the police department at 630-257-1550.
The above information is from a press release by the Lemont Police Department.