Everyone in St. Louis, Missouri knows the kids have returned to school. The residential neighborhoods are active with parents shuffling kids from their beds, to the kitchen table, out the door, to the car, and out of the neighborhood. Young and old students are standing on the corners waiting for the school bus to arrive. The big yellow school buses are moving about, transporting excited (or not so excited) students to their respective schools. Some students ride their bicycles to school. The high school students are running to their cars, likely because they are running late, and en route to pick up their friends, hoping to make it to first period on time.
To me, it’s fun to see the hustle and bustle. It is a reminder that fall is upon us which means cooler weather, comfortable sweatshirts, football, and gorgeous leaves. But it also means that our roadways are busier and more dangerous. Recent car accidents in St. Louis, Missouri, Jefferson County, Missouri and St. Charles Missouri prove this point. Students are focused on making it to school on time, and other things, as opposed to the roadway. Bus drivers may be distracted by phone calls, rowdy students on the bus, or the bus route if unfamiliar with the route to school. Adult drivers are likely distracted by confirming that their little student ate breakfast, brushed teeth, knows not to speak with strangers. All of these driving distractions can lead to accident injuries: car accidents, truck accidents, bus accidents, pedestrian accidents, and bicycle accidents.
It’s easy to be distracted while driving. We have all been there. All we can do is make a commit to ourselves, our children, and the community to try to be better. With school starting, there are more vehicles on the roadway. There will be more car accidents, more bus accidents, more tractor trailer accidents. If we all make an effort to, for the short trip to the school, focus on nothing but the roadway, the number of distracted driving accidents will decrease. While it is important that the students make it to school to learn, it is just as important that we get them there safely.