The New Mexico Department of Transportation wants drivers and pedestrians to be aware of traffic laws concerning school zones now that school is back in session in many areas of the state.
The following general traffic laws should be remembered.
• No person shall exceed 15 miles per hour while driving a vehicle on a highway through a school zone (unless otherwise posted).
• A traveling vehicle shall yield to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within designated walk ways.
• Every pedestrian crossing the roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles.
• No pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle so close that is impossible for the driver to yield.
• Whenever any vehicle is stopped at a marked crosswalk or unmarked crosswalk at an intersection to permit a pedestrian to cross the roadway, the driver of an approaching vehicle from the rear shall not overtake and pass such stopped vehicle.
• Crosswalks may be established over highways abutting a school or the grounds adjacent to a school, and all children crossing the highway shall be required to do so within the marked crosswalks.
• Every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian upon any roadway and shall give warning by sounding the horn when necessary and observe proper precaution upon observing any child or any confused or incapacitated person on the roadway.
The Department of Transportation news release encourages all motorists to observe school zones and to watch for children during the school year. It also advises motorists and pedestrians to look in both directions when crossing an intersection.