Parents are being urged to ‘put a brake’ on irresponsible parking when dropping off or picking up their children from school.
That is the message being sent out by East Dunbartonshire Council which says that the practice is putting other children in danger.
The authority says that parking on yellow zig-zag lines, pavements and other areas close to school entrances is a constant danger to children.
Now the council has started a campaign, Park Smart, to discourage ‘dangerous and selfish’ parents who put their own needs ahead of the safety of pupils and to raise awareness of the dangers inherent in irresponsibley parking outside school entrances.
The campaign aims to encourage drivers to find a safe place to park when collecting or dropping off their children.
Depute Leader of East Dunbartonshire, Council Ashay Ghai, is also the Convener of the Neighbourhood Services Committee.
Councillor Ghai said: “It is understandable that busy parents wish to drop their children off as close to the school as possible.
“However, the important issue is about keeping all our children safe when they are crossing roads outside schools rather than convenience and saving time.”
Parents, or their children’s carers, of new, primary 1 pupils in East Dunbartonshire schools will receive a copy of a leaflet entitled ‘Safe Start’ which contains road safety advice.
Councillor Ghai continued: “We also promote the use of active alternatives such as leaving the car at home and walking or cycling to school or parking further away and finishing the journey on foot.”
The Park Smart initiative was developed by Road Safety West of Scotland, which East Dunbartonshire Council is a member of.
Its Chair, Councillor Robert Steel, commented: “Irresponsible parking and driving around schools poses a considerable risk to both child and adult pededstrians.
“It is important for us to encourage parents to consider the possible consequences that may result from thoughtless actions.”
The initiative helps Council road safety units throughout the West of Scotland target areas, in consultation with head teachers, where there is a particular problems with parking or stopping too near school gates or end of school.
Inspector David Carballo of Police Scotland added: “It is disapppointing that many parents and other drivers continue to park indiscriminately outside schools.
“Parked vehicles can mask children and adults trying to cross the road and the potentially tragic outcomes should be clear to all.
“The responsibility for parking in a safe place to pick up or drop off children rests solely with the driver.”
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