Safety Reminders as Students Head Back To School

Our students go back to school in Fairfax County on Monday, Aug. 26. Residents can expect increased pedestrian and vehicular traffic in neighborhoods and around schools. We are committed to making sure our students have a safe start to the school year and our officers will be conducting increased enforcement near crosswalks and bus stops.

We also need your help to ensure the safety of our students. Below are some tips for adults and students to keep in mind.

Bus pic 2

School Busses

  • It is illegal to pass a stopped school bus that is loading or unloading children. Stop for any bus that has its lights and “stop arm” activated. Drivers must stop in both directions, unless separated from the bus by a median.
  • Kids should be aware of the bus “danger zone” – blind spots around the bus where the driver may not be able to see them. Children should maintain a distance of 10 feet away from the front, sides and rear of the bus.


  • Familiarize yourself, and your children, with laws and safety tips related to school buses, school zones, crosswalks and signals.
  • Build extra time into your schedule to accommodate the increased congestion around school start and end times.
  • Pay attention to your surroundings and do not assume others see you or that you have the right-of-way.
  • Do not block crosswalks or intersections and look ahead to determine whether you can get completely across the intersection to avoid getting stuck in it or on a crosswalk.
  • Do not be distracted by electronic devices or passengers; be focused on the roadway, what’s ahead and what’s around you.


  • Children should walk with a responsible adult and in a group.
  • Make sure you walk on the sidewalk; if there is not one, walk facing traffic.
  • Pay attention to the road and where you are going; do not play with, push or shove others.
  • Wear brightly colored clothing to be more visible to drivers.


  • Use the proper gear. Wear a helmet that fits properly and buckle it on every ride.
  • Utilize the sidewalk whenever possible; if you ride on the roadway, ride in the same direction as traffic.
  • When riding on the sidewalk, you are expected to follow pedestrian traffic laws; when on the roadway, you are expected to follow motor vehicle traffic laws.

For more information, visit our traffic safety webpage.