Schools are frequent sites of bad driving habits


As kids go back to school, many Texas parents are adding drop-offs and pick-ups to their daily routine. Most parents won’t think twice about their driving around schools. However, unsafe driving habits are all-too-common around school zones.

In fact, Texas features three of the most dangerous schools for traffic safety in the country, according to this study. Researchers observed distracted driving and distracted pedestrians at high rates around school zones.

But why do schools feature such high rates of poor driving (and walking) habits? Some of the potential factors are:

Lots of young drivers

This one seems self-explanatory, but schools have a major concentration of young drivers. Newly-licensed 16 to 18-year-olds are driving to and from class. Newly-licensed 16 to 18-year-olds are driving to and from class. These new drivers may not have formed safe driving habits which can contribute to more dangerous situations near schools.

Distracted driving/walking

A study showed 88% of drivers use their cell phones while behind the wheel. This behavior does not seem to stop when someone enters a school zone. Furthermore, the study found 25% of high-school pedestrians were unaware of their surroundings. Combining these two distractions heightens the risk of accidents between drivers and pedestrians.

Unsafe speed limits

Lower speed limits can make a safer environment for drivers, as traffic operates at slower speeds. This can reduce the risk of serious accidents. Unfortunately, only four of every ten school zones featured speed limits of 20 miles per hour. Lower speeds around schools can help lessen the impact of the accidents that occur.

While there is no single cause for the higher rates of accidents around school zones, it remains an issue nationwide. Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for teenagers in the United States.

As a parent, model strong driving behaviors for younger drivers at all times but especially around schools. Keep your phone stashed and watch for distracted drivers and walkers. Stay alert and watch for potentially dangerous situations. Help keep our school zones safe.

If you are involved in a distracted driving accident, call us at (713) 222-7211. You may be entitled to damages from a negligent driver. Your consultation is always free.