Po­lice of­fer school safety tips

The Dundalk Eagle - - OBITUARIES -

Wait for School Buses

The Baltimore County Po­lice Depart­ment re­minds all driv­ers to stop when the lights on school buses are flash­ing.

Mary­land law states that ve­hi­cles must come to a com­plete stop on both sides of the street if there is no phys­i­cal di­vider or bar­rier. Driv­ers who pass the bus be­fore all lights have ceased flash­ing may face the fol­low­ing con­se­quences:

Driv­ers who pass a school bus while the lights are flash­ing will re­ceive a ci­ta­tion that car­ries a max­i­mum payable fine of $570 and a three-point penalty.

Driv­ers who stop but then pro­ceed while the lights are flash­ing will re­ceive a ci­ta­tion that car­ries a max­i­mum payable fine of $570 and a two-point penalty.

Driv­ers who con­trib­ute to an ac­ci­dent when they fail to stop for a school bus while the lights are flash­ing may face ad­di­tional penal­ties.

Chil­dren are not al­ways aware of their sur­round­ings and as­sume that driv­ers will stop for them. Young­sters also dart into the road with­out look­ing first for traf­fic. Al­low room for the fre­quent stops that hap­pen dur­ing the morn­ing pick up and the af­ter­noon drop off.

Ed­u­cate Your Chil­dren About School Safety

Baltimore County Po­lice re­mind par­ents, guardians and chil­dren about school safety. Although the Po­lice Depart­ment ed­u­cates chil­dren in school on stranger dan­ger, par­ents can also pro­vide guid­ance on safety.

Be aware of putting your child’s name on any­thing that is read­ily vis­i­ble. This might al­low an ab­duc­tor to get on a “first name” ba­sis with your child and de­velop a sense of trust.

Walk the route to and from school with your chil­dren, point­ing out safe places to go if they are be­ing fol­lowed or need help.

Talk to your chil­dren about strangers ap­proach­ing them and some of the ploys they might use. Stress to them that adults shouldn’t need a child’s help to find a puppy or get di­rec­tions; they should ask an­other adult for that in­for­ma­tion.

Teach your chil­dren that it is okay to say “no.” Tell them to trust their in­stincts.

Re­mind your chil­dren never to give the im­pres­sion they are home alone if strangers call or come to the door. Never open the door for a stranger. Teach them about di­al­ing 911.

Baltimore County Pub­lic Schools have sev­eral dif­fer­ent emer­gency pro­ce­dures that may be im­ple­mented in the event of an emer­gency sit­u­a­tion. Learn the dif­fer­ence be­tween the two most fre­quently used pro­ce­dures: Alert Sta­tus and Lock­down.

Load Up the Kids and Lock Up the House

The Baltimore County Po­lice Depart­ment en­cour­ages ev­ery­one to es­tab­lish the habit of ba­sic se­cu­rity when leav­ing the house. Ba­sic crime pre­ven­tion mea­sures can make it dif­fi­cult for a bur­glar to en­ter your home.

Lock your win­dows and doors be­fore you walk or load the kids up for the drive to the bus stop or school. Don’t give a bur­glar a per­fect op­por­tu­nity.

Add a se­cu­rity check­list to your rush-hour rou­tine. Par­ents or day­care providers can pro­vide a learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence for chil­dren. De­pend­ing on the ages of the chil­dren, give them a task that re­lates to their se­cu­rity. Older chil­dren can check and lock win­dows, while younger ones can make sure the doors are locked be­hind you when you leave.

Keep an eye out for strangers who seem to be lurk­ing on your street with no real pur­pose. Watch for cars driv­ing slowly through the neigh­bor­hood. They might be siz­ing up po­ten­tial targets. Don’t hes­i­tate to call 911 if some­thing con­cerns you. Pro­vide a ba­sic de­scrip­tion of the in­di­vid­ual or car; a tag num­ber is espe­cially help­ful to po­lice.

Make life for crim­i­nals dif­fi­cult. Bur­glars are op­por­tunists who work dur­ing the day and night. In fact, many bur­glars strike dur­ing day­light hours when they be­lieve all the oc­cu­pants of the house may be at school or work. Re­mem­ber to keep your home se­cure at all times.

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