school bus

McKinney ISD students go back to school Thursday, and drivers will begin to see those familiar flashing lights once again.

The city has more than 70 school zones with flashing beacons.

According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), there were 765 traffic crashes in Texas school zones last year, resulting in one death and 15 serious injuries. The most common causes for these crashes were failure to control speed, driver inattention, and failure to yield the right of way, when turning left to a private drive or at a stop sign.

There were 2,357 traffic crashes involving school buses in Texas in 2018, killing five people and injuring 42. Speed and driver inattention also were the top factors in those crashes, according to TxDOT.

McKinney ISD school zone times are from 7:15-8:15 a.m. and from 2:45-3:45 p.m. for elementary schools; from 8-9 a.m. and from 3:30-4:30 p.m. for middle schools; 6:45 -7:45 a.m. and from 2:15-3:15 p.m. for high schools.

The city reminds residents to keep the following in mind during these times:

• In a school zone when flashers are blinking, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection.

• Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign.

• Always stop for school buses that is stopped and operating visual signal.

• Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians.

• Don't block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn, forcing pedestrians to go around you; this could put them in the path of moving traffic.

• Don't double park; it blocks visibility for other children and vehicles.

• Don't load or unload children across the street from the school.

Speeding in a school zone in McKinney carries a $215 fine. Other violations also incur additional fines when committed in a school zone.

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