Keep a look out for them

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Schools around the county have dismissed for summer, ending another year and sending hundreds of children and their families out of their routines.

The familiar traffic patterns around school buildings between 8 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. and 3:15 to 3:45 p.m. are no longer in play. Instead of looking out for an organized flow of bicyclists and pedestrians, drivers now will need to watch out for sporadic traffic at all times of the day and in the evening as well.

We have this "talk" with our readers twice a year -- once in the fall when it is time to look out for children going to and from school, and once at the start of summer vacation.

No matter how many times parents have discussions with their children about the proper way to ride their bicycles and avoiding dashing in and out of parked cars into the street, there always seems to be a time when even the most repeated lessons are forgotten.

We can't say that we blame the children for focusing on their games, we were that age once as well and fondly recall playing pickup games of football, basketball and baseball in the neighborhood.

It's pretty easy to get caught up in the game, and the ball usually ends up in the street at a pivotal moment, when quick retrieval can literally mean the difference between a win and a loss.

That's why it is so important for adult drivers to constantly be on the lookout while driving in town. With technological distractions vying for the attention of the driver, such as the car radio and cell phones it is easy to miss something.

And let's not even get into what happens when a group of teens are in a car together.

But here's the deal: we need to make sure we do everything we can to avoid a tragedy.

So hey -- let's be careful out there.