Students throughout the Macedon Ranges recently returned to school and are being encouraged to stay between the lines on their school commute.
Woodend crossing supervisor Chris Ingram has more than four decades of experience in road safety and had a chat with the Star Weekly about the do’s and don’ts for this school year.
“Crossing the crossing is like colouring in, you always stay between the lines,” Chris said.
“A lot of people don’t realise [crossing supervisors] give them the foundations of road knowledge, which they will build on as they learn to ride a bike and then drive a car.
“By dealing with the children you become part of the community because you develop relationships with the children, siblings, parents, grandparents, and even the dog.”
Chris has spent time as a crossing supervisor in Lancefield, and prior to this, worked at VicRoads for 35 years.
“I worked for VicRoads as a training officer, as part of that I used to do road safety courses at schools and train driving instructors, things like that,” he said.
“I wanted to do something that was useful and wanted to give back to the community.
“When the children come across the first time I spend some time explaining what I do and the rules of crossing the crossing, [which include] stopping and waiting until I blow the whistle twice.”
Chris said pedestrians are also not allowed to ride a bike or bounce a ball across the crossing.
“Something that most drivers don’t seem to be aware of is that when flags are present at crossings, even is the supervisor isn’t there, they are required to stop and give way to all pedestrians.
“Although we’re supposed to create a safe environment for children to go to school, it’s not just for them. We don’t discriminate, we take everyone across.
“At Woodend the second largest group is elderly citizens. The crossing becomes a safety hub for the whole community.”
According to VicRoads, school speed limits apply between 8-9.30am and 2.30- 4pm, on weekdays during the Victorian school terms.
Term one this year will run until Thursday, March 28, and term two will start up again on Monday, April 15.
For more information on school zones, visit: shorturl.at/hkIQS