August is here and very soon school will be back in session. School can bring with it some driving challenges for everyone. Here are some tips to stay safe in and near school zones. Remember it is illegal to pass a school bus when the lights are flashing and the stop sign is extended. The bus stop sign goes for both sides of the road, even if it is a four lane street. Do not switch lanes or make U-turns while in a school zone. While in a school zone mind the reduced speed limit, fines can be much greater for a school zone violation. Pay attention to crosswalks. You don’t want to block a crosswalk. This can lead to kids possibly running behind your car and into someone not expecting them to be there. Also remember to yield to flashing crosswalk signs. Flashing crosswalk signs called Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons can be popular in heavily walked areas and school zones. When the lights are flashing there is typically someone in the crosswalk trying to cross. Another school zone safety measure is a crossing guard. Pay attention to what the crossing guard is telling you. Usually the crossing guard is the last person in the street. Finally just like any type of driving keep distractions to a minimum. The beginning of the school year can be an exciting time for kids, and kids could be anywhere. Have a safe start to the school year.