The beach bag is replaced by a well-filled school backpack.

As most people know, the start of the school year is a time of renewed energy, new school supplies, and reunion with classmates. But there is another, less well-known statistic that characterizes this period: right after the summer holidays, the number of road accidents increases.

With the resumption of schools in the center of the country and the approaching start in the north and south, it is essential to take a moment and reflect on road safety around schools. The first days of school can be chaotic, with many children and parents hitting the road at the same time. This requires extra attention and responsibility from everyone.

“kiss and ride” 

A growing point of concern is the increasing trend of parents preferring to drop their children off at school by car. These “kiss-and-ride” zones can be very useful, but often cause a lot of traffic congestion and dangerous situations, especially during rush hour.

Shockingly, students are often the victims. At Veilig Verkeer Nederland, this trend has been a thorn in the flesh for too long. They no longer want to stand by and hope that this year we can count on the help of the whole of the Netherlands. So also on yours!

In the months of August and September, many young people are still trying to find their routine again. They may be learning new routes because they're moving to a different school, or they're just less alert after the relaxed summer months. At the same time, motorists may not always be aware of the increase in cyclists and pedestrians now that schools have started again.

From the campaign 'Our schools have started again', they put down a joint message: motorists, moderate your speed and be extra alert! But it's not just the motorists. We also encourage parents to talk to their children about road safety, practice routes and make them aware of the dangers on the road.

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Every year, after the summer holidays, there are a striking number of accidents among cycling students. We need to reverse this negative trend. By making motorists and other road users aware that schools are starting again via social media, you help children to go to school safely.

Due to the large number of cars arriving and departing at the same time, congestion occurs. This causes frustration and increases the risk of accidents. Children are unpredictable. They can suddenly cross the road or run between cars. With so many cars close to the school, the risk of accidents is greater.

More cars means more emissions. This is not only bad for the environment, but also for the health of the children. Consider carpooling with other parents in the area. This reduces the number of cars and reduces the load on the road. If possible, let children go to school on foot or by bicycle. This is not only healthier, but it also reduces traffic.

Consider parking a few blocks away and walking the last bit to school. This reduces the crowds directly around the school and also gives children some extra exercise. Double parking, stopping at pedestrian crossings or other traffic violations only make the situation more dangerous.

Regardless of how you take your child to school, always stay alert. Children can be unpredictable, so an extra pair of eyes can make the difference between a safe and a dangerous situation. Let's start this new school year with a renewed focus on safety. By working together and taking each other into account, we can provide a safe and pleasant environment for our children.

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