Local Police crackdown on back to school drivers

Police aim to prevent fatal accidents


EL CENTRO, Calif. - Back to school season is in full swing and that means parents are getting back into the routine of driving their kids to school.

Police are cracking down in one local city to bring attention to safety regulations and what drivers need to look out for.

 “First and foremost, put all of your cellular devices down, keep your hands free, keep your head up and keep your eyes on the roadway,” said Robert Sawyer, Commander with the El Centro Police Department.

In 2013, California witnessed 701 pedestrians killed along with 141 bicyclists killed according to the El Centro Police Department.

Locally, ECPD has investigate nine fatal and injury collisions involving pedestrians and bicyclists the past three years.

 “Plan ahead and leave a little bit earlier than you normally would to give yourself some time to find the parking and give your child the room to move across the sidewalks using the crosswalks and crossing guards in the areas we have them throughout the city,” explained Sawyer.

Earlier this month the department performed safety enforcement operations focusing on bicyclists and pedestrians.

 “What we’ve seen is some illegal U-turns, some turning movements that were improper in the school zones. So pay attention to signage, pay attention to markings on the roadway,” said Sawyer.

Safety signs have been popping up all over El Centro streets making drivers more aware of safety regulations.

Police have mapped out locations over the past three years where collisions have occurred. These areas will be heavily patrolled.

 “Cell phones, I can't hammer that enough. That’s just something we really kind of draw the line in the sand here in our city. If we see you on a cell phone, we have the opportunity to pull you over; you're going to get a citation. Bicyclists, if you are under 18, you have to wear a bicycle helmet,” added Sawyer.


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