That time of year again! Schools out, and ACT’s school zone signs are closed… well most of them. Doing the rat run through Hackett this morning I noticed a school zone sign open and displaying the 40 limit. Unaware it was school holidays, I slowed without hesitation. As the sign is still legally enforceable whilst displaying 40, I will continue to slow until it’s folded up.
As I drove down Majura Ave. I noticed the school zone signs folded up, despite maybe 10 young kids walking near the road some without parents, perhaps heading to a school holiday program of some sort at the school there. I slowed to 40 again whilst in the vicinity of the kids.
Do you think school zone signs in the ACT need attention? If so, should they remain “unfolded” for school holiday programs? Should we use Victoria’s model and implement permanent 40km/h zones around schools? Or the model used in some US states where drivers must slow to 25mph(40km/h) only when there’s children near the road? Perhaps it’s time to change to electronic speed limit signs that display a lower speed limit at certain times of the day.
Or should we simply bring laws into force stating that any person driving a motor vehicle or riding a bike who hits and kills a person on foot near a school, be charged with manslaughter regardless of circumstance? Watch how quickly the 40km/h zones become irrelevant as people slow their vehicles to a crawl whilst there’s people near the road. (Laws like this already exist for entire towns in Europe, the result being a dramatic increase in concentration from people driving motor vehicles, and a decrease in fatalities as high as 95%.)