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Advocates call for safer school routes for students

By Tara Clow Apr 19, 2024 | 1:43 PM

The Moncton Active Transportation Coalition is rallying to develop safer student school routes.

A grade five student was struck by a vehicle while cycling to school last week in Moncton’s north end. Fortunately, he only suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

President Calvin Martini hopes they can raise awareness, “We’re very concerned whenever anything like this happens as I’m sure most people are. We really feel for the family and the driver and everybody involved. As a society, we’ve just failed that child on providing a safe option for them to get to school, on their own, on their bike, and that’s a concern.”

He believes kids deserve a safe way to get to school independently, whether walking or riding a bike.

“As drivers, we need to really be a lot more careful. We know there’s speeding, certainly within the Greater Moncton area, but also specifically in this neighbourhood area around the Northrop Frye School. People need to be patient with one another, and not drive distracted. Pay extra attention when they’re driving around children because as we know, children can do things unpredictably,” Martini says

He feels solutions need to be a partnership between the City, RCMP, schools, parents and children, “We need to identify Safe Routes to School, specific corridors that kids can use to get from their home safely to school with that route prioritized for them.”

He asks drivers to take different routes not located near the schools and to be very careful.

“Another thing we’ve got to remember, is we’re approaching summer. Now the kids are in school, but during the day in the summer, they’re going to be on the streets more. They’re going to be more in the neighbourhoods and we as drivers really need to take extra caution. We need to allow more time to get to work or to school to be able to make that a safer experience for everybody on the road,” Martini adds.

He says road safety involves everybody working together to improve safety for all.