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Follow traffic safety tips as children head back to school

September 23, 2016

The greatest threat to residents in Los Angeles County, both personally and financially, isn't violent or property crime. In Cerritos, and probably in all of the other 88 cities in Los Angeles County, the most significant personal risk to you and your family is while driving your car on local streets and highways. The single most common public safety-related incident that befalls Cerritos residents is when cars collide with other cars, bicyclists or pedestrians.

Cerritos averages approximately 200 residential burglaries annually, but between 800 to more than 1,000 reported traffic collisions. Living defensively is important in reducing our crime risk, but driving defensively is arguably even more important in reducing your risk of personal injury and even death.

It is for these reasons, especially with children returning back to school, that it is important to heed school-related traffic safety tips. Below are some school safety tips provided by the National Safe Routes to School Program and the City of Cerritos Community Safety Division staff.

  • Slow down and obey all traffic laws and speed limits. This may be the most important safety tip to observe around schools.
  • Comply with school drop-off and pick-up procedures. Many schools in Cerritos have student valet or parking lot transition programs and should be used if possible.
  • Avoid double parking and stopping in crosswalks or in people's driveways to let children out of the car. Do not allow children to cross the street mid-block, and teach them to use crosswalks. Cerritos Sheriff's deputies have been directed to issue citations for these violations when observed.
  • Stop for a school bus when red overhead lights are flashing or a stop sign has been activated on the street side of the bus. This is a very expensive citation that deputies will issue when such a violation is observed.
  • Watch for children crossing streets near schools or at nearby corners. Remember that pedestrians have the right-of-way when in marked or unmarked crosswalks. (Any intersection has an unmarked crosswalk unless a posted sign says otherwise.)
  • Watch for children on sidewalks when backing out or entering a driveway.
  • Pay attention to the directions of crossing guards, and take the time to thank them once in a while. There are 23 guards in Cerritos who put themselves at risk every day protecting our kids.

Heed these safety tips to help keep the children in Cerritos safe.


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