GEORGETOWN, SC (WBTW) – School begins on Wednesday for students in Georgetown and Horry Counties and officials want to remind everyone to be extra cautious on the roads. Alma Sierra with the Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office says you can expect to see more deputies patrolling the area as the students walk and ride the bus to school.
“There’s going to be a lot of what seems to be commotion. We’re going to try and make it as controlled as possible so just be aware of your surroundings and make sure you’re watching out for those babies crossing,” added Alma.
She says the Sheriff’s Office has a zero tolerance policy for speeding in school zones and driving around school buses when the stop sign is out.
“There are fines involved if you break those laws and it could be $1,000 and up if violated,” said Sierra. She said many people think about school bus safety, but often forget about the children that walk to school.
“Be very courteous about the cross walks where the children have to cross. Try not to block those areas so that the children can cross safely with the cross guards that are also out there,” she added.
Karen Wilson, the Transportation Manager with the Georgetown County School District, says their children can be in serious danger if drivers aren’t focused.
“When we have a motorist that is there that is impatient or not paying attention, they could hit the most precious cargo that we transport,” she added.
Wilson says if you drive around a school bus, the drivers have a “Stop Arm Violation Form” they will fill out and turn in to SC Highway Patrol. She added that the school district has been talking about getting stop arm cameras.
“There are other counties that are utilizing that but we would need to actually see that it’s effective,” said Wilson.
Wilson and Sierra say to keep children safe, parents are asked to leave a few minutes early for work and school and to be as patient as possible when school starts on Wednesday.