With the new school year beginning this Thursday, August 15th the Joplin Police Department would like to remind all drivers to pay attention to the school zones and school buses. The school zones are posted near schools and along roadways with higher pedestrian flow. The goal of the lower speed in the school zone is to offer safe passage for the children by slowing vehicles which allows increased reaction times for the drivers. The school zone times vary depending on the start and end time of the school day at that particular school. Some school zones with pedestrian crossings are staffed with a Crossing Guard to help ensure the safety of the children. It is important to note that all City of Joplin School Zones are 20 MPH. Some of the school zones are equipped with flashing yellow lights and speed signs that change to help remind drivers of the school zone.
The start of this school year also brings a new challenge with the transportation to and from the South Middle School. As the Mercy Hospital is being built, 50th Street is being re-constructed and with all the rain the road is not opened for the start of the school year. According to Dave Dahlquist, the project engineer, the anticipated new open date for 50th and Hearnes (Main) is September 16th. We are encouraging all motorists to plan ahead and expect delays get to and from South Middle School as all drivers will have to use the 4-way stop at Connecticut and 44th.
The Traffic Division of the Joplin Police Department traditionally makes school zone safety a top priority. To help ensure the safety of the children walking to and from school the Police Department will focus enforcement efforts in the school zones. You can find more information in regard to the City Ordinances such as driver responsibilities when approaching a stopped school bus and times for a specific school in your area by visiting the Joplin Police Department’s Website at www.joplinpolice.org