Tag Archives: Safety Tips

5 School Bus Safety Tips

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Although we’re nearing the tail end of the fall school semester, there’s plenty of ways we can help raise safety awareness for our students. According to various studies, it has been stated that buses are the safest mode of transportation for school children. Some may argue that school buses are a thing of the past; however, over 25 million students still take the bus to and from school. This week is National School Bus Safety Week, and we’re celebrating by bringing you the top 5 school bus safety tips. Enjoy!

Be Aware as a Driver – Bus drivers have to carry out the very stressful task of transporting 50 or so noisy children across town to school every morning. It makes their job a lot easier if you do your part and let them have the right of way on the road. Make sure that you keep your distance from their vehicle and yield when they stop unexpectedly or merge lanes.

Rules of Waiting and Boarding – It’s important to inform your kids the proper way to behave while waiting at the bus stop. Make sure they avoid running into the street, alleyways or other people’s yards. When the bus is pulling up, they should wait until it has come to a complete stop and opened its doors before they board. They should also use the handrail and watch their steps to avoid any injuries.

Right Behavior on the Bus – Like we stated before, bus drivers have an enormous responsibility of transporting 50 kids across the neighborhood. It would help them out and make their job a lot easier if you teach your child to stay in their seat and remain subdued for the duration of the bus ride. Urge them to speak at a low level and avoid any roughhouse behavior that can ultimately be a distraction to the driver.

Properly Exiting the Bus – When the bus has come to a complete stop, tell you child to remain in their seat until the bus driver opens the door and gives the orders to exit in an orderly fashion. The bus will always drop off at a crosswalk, so they should never stray from the designated crossing path. Also, be sure your children know that they’re supposed to walk in front of a bus – never behind it.

Be Aware as a Pedestrian – Some children prefer to either walk or ride their bikes to school, and it’s in their best interest to learn the rules of the road when they come into contact with school buses. Make sure they never chase after a moving bus or loiter around one that’s stopped. If the bus is unloading at a stop, they need to obey the law and wait until the driver gives them the signal to move along.

Before we reach the end of the fall semester, now is the perfect time to make sure that you’re covered. Give us a call at 1-800-Thanks-Al to make sure that your auto, home, boat and RV insurance policy is up to date, and you’ve got the best rate and coverage possible!

5 Tips for New Drivers

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This fall could mark many firsts for you and your family, particularly if one of your teenagers is turning 16, and we all know what that means!

This is a crucial event for any parent and one that could trigger some cause for concern. Many teenagers and especially millennials have what is known as the “Superman complex.” They believe they are invincible and, thanks to technology, their attention span has been dwindled down to a mere nanosecond. Because of this, it’s important to identify potential dangers and distractions your teen may face on the road and to prevent them from getting into an accident. When sitting your son or daughter down for the first time to discuss the rules of the road, make sure you address the following…

Texting and Driving – Teenagers these days are addicted to cell phones and their eyes are glued to these screens virtually 24/7. It is critical that you stress the emphasis of being patient and letting them know that sending a text can be deadly!

Rubbernecking – The only car accident I have ever had was caused by rubbernecking, and it occurred the first week I started driving. An accident caused by rubbernecking happens when drivers, being distracted by something, take their eyes off the road, whether it’s a billboard, another accident, or a friend in the car. Driving is a full-time job and just one second of taking your eyes off the road could result in something disastrous.

Speeding and reckless driving -Driving for the first time is new and exciting for everyone, and it can be very tempting to put the pedal to the metal and release your inner Jeff Gordon. Young teenagers may also drive recklessly to act cool or impress someone they’re with, so make sure that your teen understands the potential danger they could face, and that they must always act responsibly when behind the wheel.

Teenage Drinking & Driving – It’s against the law, it’s stupid, and it’s dangerous! Unfortunately, alcohol consumption is very prevalent in high schools these days. Hopefully, your teenager never has to deal with this issue, but if they do, make sure that they either Uber home or call you to pick them up.

Never Drive Tired – Driving while exhausted can be just as dangerous as driving under the influence. If your new driver is feeling sleepy, tell them to chew gum or ice, turn up the radio or simply pull over and rest instead. Drowsiness is a serious risk while driving and it’s not something to mess with!

We hope that these tips and guidelines will make an impact on both you and your upcoming 16-year-old. Although it can be nerve-wracking giving your teenager keys to an automobile, just remember that this is a huge moment that shapes their growth as they draw closer to adulthood.

Before teaching your new driver the rules of the road, give us a call at 1-800-Thanks-Al to have an agent make sure that your auto insurance has the right amount of coverage for your family and your needs.  We can also make sure that you are getting the best rate for your policy.  You might even qualify for additional discounts, especially if you have your home insurance with us. We wish you the best and good luck to your new drivers!

5 Back to School Driving Tips


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Say it ain’t so!!

Believe it or not, but we’re entering the last week of Summer Vacation 2016 and it’s time to accept the harsh reality that a new school year is about to begin. As we close the books on another successful and scorching hot summer break, it’s important to note that there will be changes to driving conditions and increased traffic during this time. We urge everyone to pay extra close attention to their surroundings and abide by the new rules of the road once the first week of school kicks off, so that we can ensure a safe environment for school goers and drivers. Here are 5 back to school driving tips to help get you back in the groove!

Be Aware of the Big Yellow Bus – Bus drivers have to carry out the very stressful task of transporting 50 or so noisy children across town to school every morning. It makes their job a lot easier if you do your part and let them have the right of way on the road. Make sure that you keep your distance from their vehicle and yield when they stop unexpectedly or merge lanes. Also, be sure your children know that they’re supposed to walk in front of a bus – never behind it.

Follow School Zones -Everybody wants to get through their morning commute as fast as possible so that they can get to the office on time. However, when it comes to the safety of kids walking to school, it’s time for us all to pump the brakes a little. Always be aware of school zones and abide by their speed limits every morning and afternoon. Never look at your phone or any other distractions during these moments either, because even though you’re at a reduced speed, something unexpected could always unfold.

Apply Carpool Rules– If you’re a parent who is part of a neighborhood carpool, there are various safety rules you need to follow and enforce upon your small passengers. Make sure that your kiddos are always wearing their seat belts and that they remain calm during the ride. Always let them out at the appropriate drop off area and let them know when and where you’re picking them up at the end of the day.

Always Cross at Crosswalks – Studies have shown that autumn is the most dangerous time of the year for accidents involving pedestrians. Since more kids will be out walking to school, be on the lookout for any jaywalkers or bike riders that are crossing the streets. Remind your children to use sidewalks and only cross at the designated crosswalks to reduce the risk of an accident occurring.

Driving Around Schools – Along with school zones, there may be other driving restrictions and regulations around school grounds that you may not be aware of. Make sure you avoid dangerous maneuvers, such as U-turns and three-point turns. Also, make sure you avoid double parking or near school bus bays

Before the school year begins, now is the perfect time to make sure you’re covered. Give us a call at 1-800-Thanks-Al to make sure that your auto, home, boat and RV insurance policy is up to date and you’ve got the best rate and coverage possible!