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Barely Passing: British Columbians get ‘D’ grade in BCAA school safety awareness survey

Victoria, British Columbia – The average driver in B.C. knows to slow down around schools and the laws around school buses. Unfortunately, everything else has been forgotten after their last drivers’ exam.

According to the British Columbia Automobile Association (BCAA) Back to School Survey conducted by Leger, drivers had serious gaps in their knowledge on safe driving around school zones. While 81 percent knew about the 30km/h speed limit around schools and 88 percent knew about school bus stopping laws, other laws quickly dropped off in driver knowledge.

In sharp contrast, 42 percent did not know the speed limit when school is not in session, only 31 percent knew about where to stop in school zones, and only 26 percent could tell when a school zone ended.

While lacking in knowledge, most drivers confirmed that dangerous driving in school zones remained a common occurrence. 80 percent witnessed speeding in school zones, 77 percent saw distracted driving, 78 percent reported illegal parking, 69 percent saw parents encouraging kids to break the rules to make the school bell and another 60 percent saw drivers acting aggressively towards others.

These results are based on an online survey with entries submitted from 1,001 adults in British Columbia, with 123 being responsible for elementary or middle school aged children. Each survey consisted of seven questions, with most respondents only getting 50 percent correct.

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