school bus stop sign

Starting Wednesday, school zones in Franklin will be active as Franklin Special School District children head back to class. Williamson County students start back on Friday. Officers will be vigilant in designated school zones across the city, focusing on speeding drivers, improper passing, and enforcing Tennessee’s ban on cell phone use in school zones.

TCA 55-8-207, which went into effect on January 1, prohibits the use of a handheld mobile device in an active school zone. Drivers over 18 are permitted to talk on their phone in a school zone only while using a hands-free device. Drivers under 18, however, are prohibited, completely, from talking on their phone while driving — even with a hands-free device.

According to this startling statistic, most of the children killed in bus-related crashes are pedestrians, four to seven years old, who are hit by drivers illegally passing a stopped school bus. Franklin Police Officers will be closely monitoring bus routes and citing drivers who disregard the flashing red lights and stop signs on school buses.

Motorists should expect slow-moving traffic in and around school zones. To avoid being late to your destination, you should leave earlier than usual. Parents are encouraged to talk with their children about safely crossing the street and walking through parking lots.

“Franklin Police Officers will be closely monitoring the 14 school zones throughout the city,” said Chief Deborah Faulkner. “Drivers who break the law, especially in school zones, can expect to be cited.”

The minimum fine for
speeding in a school zone
 or
illegally passing a stopped school bus:
 $139.75

Drivers must be aware of and comply with all directions given to them by Franklin Police School Patrol Crossing Guards. Motorists must be prepared to stop and follow their instructions.

Parents are encouraged to visit their child’s school website to familiarize themselves with drop-off and pick-up information at each school.

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