FAQs re: School Zone Reinstatement
Weren’t there already school zones in Edmonton? I’ve seen the signs.
School zones have not been used in Edmonton since the 1970s. There were phased out when reviews showed no difference in the number of pedestrian/vehicle collisions between urban areas where school zones were used and where none were in place.
Despite phasing out official school zones, signage was installed that identified those areas to raise awareness amongst motorists about vulnerable road users. These areas, however, were not formally school zones based on Alberta Transportation’s guidelines and remained subject to a 50 km/hr speed limit.
Why did the City bring back school zones after 40 years?
The growing concerns and emphasis on community liveability and safety by Edmontonians, combined with more awareness and focus around elementary school safety, resulted in the City moving forward with 30 km/h school zones at schools with elementary grade students
Will the school zones be in place at all Edmonton schools?
At this point, the school zones are being installed only around schools with elementary grades.
What date do the new school zones take effect?
The school zones will be in effect as of Tuesday, September 2, 2014 as indicated with 30 km/h school zone signage.
What times and days are the zones in effect?
Every school day from 08:00 to 16:30
What is the speed limit when school zones are in effect?
How many schools are affected?
School zones were installed around 250 elementary schools in Edmonton
I saw a school on a main road with no school zone signs. Why is that?
School zones were installed only on residential and collector roads, not arterial roads.
Why 30 kilometres per hour?
Studies have shown that while vehicles travelling at 50 km/h require 24 – 28 meters to come to a complete stop under ideal conditions (and another 10 meters when roads are wet or icy), vehicles travelling 30 km/h need only 11 – 13 meters in ideal conditions (and another 5 meters in poor conditions). By slowing vehicles down, motorists have better opportunity to react when children are crossing the road, and students stand a better chance of surviving a pedestrian/vehicle collision should one occur.
Why weren’t school zones installed around all schools in Edmonton?
Young children are at the greatest risk for pedestrian-related injury and death. They lack the cognitive ability to judge speeds and safe situations. By installing school zones around elementary schools, we are able to protect the most vulnerable road users in Edmonton.
How far does the school zone extend?
Motorists are required to slow down to 30 km/h from the start of the school zone and stay at that rate of speed until after they have passed the sign which indicates the end of the school zone.
Is there a grace period of any kind before the new speed limits go into effect?
No, the limits are in effect as of 08:00 on Tuesday, September 2, 2014. An extensive public awareness campaign started mid-August that included newspaper, radio and television advertisements; social media promotion; information sent for distribution to parents via the Edmonton Public School Board, Edmonton Catholic School Board and private elementary schools; web site; 311; a media event on August 28; information provided via the Edmonton Police Service, the Alberta Motor Association, the Edmonton Community League Foundation and through members of City Council.
Will the speed limits in school zones be enforced?
Yes. The Edmonton Police Service, along with the City’s Office of Traffic Safety, will be using a combination of manned enforcement and photo radar vans to enforce the new school zone speed limits.