Tips for Safe Driving Around Schools

By Timothy Albrite

As children head back to school, ensuring their safety on the road becomes a top priority for parents, teachers, and the community at large. With the increasing traffic around school zones, it’s crucial to adhere to safe driving practices. Here are some valuable guidelines to enhance safety around schools:

  1. Stick to Speed Limits– Speed limits in school zones are designed to protect our youngest and most vulnerable pedestrians. The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) has set the speed limit around schools at 30 km/h. This reduced speed allows drivers more reaction time to unexpected movements by children who might dash onto the road.
  2. Obey Traffic Signs and Signals– Traffic signs around schools, including pedestrian crossings, speed bumps, and “school ahead” signs, are there for a reason. These signals guide drivers to slow down, stop, or yield, ensuring the safety of children crossing the road. 
  3. Be Extra Cautious During Peak Hours– School start and end times see a flurry of activity with students arriving and leaving. Drivers should be extra vigilant during these periods, usually between 7:00 – 8:00 AM and 3:00 – 5:00 PM. Anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic and stop for school buses loading or unloading children.
  4. Avoid Distractions– Distracted driving is a leading cause of accidents globally. In school zones, the risk multiplies. Kenyan drivers are urged to avoid using mobile phones, eating, or engaging in any activity that diverts their attention from the road. Staying focused ensures you can react swiftly to any sudden movements by children.
  5. Respect Crossing Guards and Volunteers– Many schools employ crossing guards or volunteers to help children cross safely. Always respect their signals and stop when they indicate. These individuals play a crucial role in maintaining safety and their directions should be followed without question.
  6. Park Responsibly– Parking around schools can be chaotic. Ensure you park only in designated areas and avoid double parking or blocking pedestrian pathways. Illegal parking not only disrupts traffic flow but also poses a significant hazard to children trying to cross the street.
  7. Educate Young Pedestrians– While drivers must be vigilant, it’s also essential to educate children on safe road practices. Encourage them to use designated pedestrian crossings, look both ways before crossing, and never run into the street. Schools and parents should regularly reinforce these safety tips.
  8. Community Involvement– Creating a safe environment around schools is a community effort. Local authorities, schools, parents, and drivers must collaborate. Schools can host safety awareness programs, while communities can advocate for better road infrastructure like zebra crossings, adequate lighting, and speed bumps.


Safe driving around schools in Kenya is a shared responsibility. By adhering to these simple yet effective guidelines from the FIA and local regulations, we can ensure our children travel to and from school safely. Remember, your caution and attentiveness on the road can save lives.

Driving safely around schools isn’t just a legal obligation—it’s a moral one. Let’s work together to protect our future generation.

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