A brand-new school year inevitably brings on a perennial problem.
Traffic and congestion around Smithers Secondary School during the morning and afternoon drop-off and pick-up periods creates issues for the school, parents, students and nearby property owners.
The situation is exacerbated by drivers not following the rules: speeding, ignoring the designated drop-off zones, disrupting traffic flow, parking in front of driveways etc.
Prevention and community safety officer Matt Davey said there have only been a couple of minor fender benders over the years, but how long will it be before something more serious happens?
There are a number of potential solutions to this problem.
The Town and RCMP could ramp up enforcement, but aside from periodic spot checks, simply do not have the resources to be there every morning and afternoon.
ICBC has developed a plan to mitigate the situation, but it is very costly and, so far, the school district is either unable or unwilling to spend the money.
So, for now at least, it is left up to parents and guardians.
First and foremost, follow the rules, they are there for the safety of everybody, particularly your children.
Secondly, leave yourself more time so it’s not a rush against the clock to get them to school and yourself to work.
You could also drop your kids off a couple of blocks away and let them walk the rest of the way.
Or, better still, let them take the bus, walk, skateboard, bicycle, snowshoe, ski or otherwise.
It did not kill previous generations of students to, heaven forbid, actually get some exercise in the mornings and afternoons having to get to and from school on their own power (uphill in both directions in a blinding snowstorm).
There are, of course, people for whom these suggestions are impractical or impossible, but reducing the traffic to only those who must drop off and pick up their children would go a long way to mitigating the problem.
Let’s keep it safe out there, folks, for everybody’s sake.