Schools Are Back In Session In Charlotte, North Carolina On Monday, August 28th
Drive Safely In School Zones. Don’t Speed In School Zones
BIG Insurance Penalties In North Carolina For Ignoring School Zone Traffic Laws
Schools in the Charlotte/Mecklenburg area are back in session on Monday, August 28th. Keeping children safe is a good reason, on its own, to drive safely and responsibly. But were you aware of the huge penalties in Charlotte and North Carolina if you don’t obey traffic laws in schools zones, such as driving over the speed limit or passing a stopped school bus?
Speeding in a school zone is punished more harshly than speeding in non-school zones. North Carolina law gives municipalities the right to set school zone speed limits. However, they can’t be set below 20 miles per hour. In Charlotte, school speed limit zones are set at 25 miles per hour. The speed limit zones go in effect 45 minutes before school begins and continue for 15 minutes after school begins. The reduced speed limit goes into effect again 15 minutes before school lets out until 30 minutes after the school day ends.
In North Carolina, school zones are designated by either (1) a sign giving notice of the school zone, the authorized speed limit, and the hours in which the lower speed is enforced, or (2) a sign with an authorized speed limit indicated by an electronic flasher that is operated with a time clock. The speed in schools zones is enforceable only on days when school is in session.
YOU SHOULD KNOW: In North Carolina, drivers must still follow all posted school zones when the lights are flashing, even if school isn’t in session.
EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BUS TRANSPORTATION SERVICES FOR CHARLOTTE-MECKLENBURG SCHOOLS
MORE BACK TO SCHOOL IN CHARLOTTE SAFETY TIPS TO KEEP CHILDREN SAFE IN A SCHOOL ZONE
- Stay alert: children can be unpredictable and tend to ignore hazards and take risks.
- Don’t block the crosswalk if you’re stopped at a red light.
- Following your school’s drop-off rules.
- Don’t unload or load children across the street from the school to save time.
- Don’t double park in a school zone as it reduces visibility.
- Make eye contact with children who are crossing a street.
- Don’t pass a vehicle that is stopped for pedestrians.
- Never pass a bus from behind, from any direction, if it is stopped to load or unload children.
- If you’re driving behind a school bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. You’ll have more time to stop if the school bus lights start flashing.
- The 10 feet around a school bus are the most dangerous for kids, so stay at least 10 feet away.
- If passing a child on a bicycle, proceed in the same direction slowly, and leave 3 feet between your car and the cyclist.
- Stay off your phone when driving, in general, but definitely in a school zone so you are not distracted.
- Even if you can’t see any children or crossing guards, obey the traffic lights and speed zones.
INSURANCE PENALTIES ARE HUGE IN CHARLOTTE FOR SPEEDING IN A SCHOOL ZONE
These traffic laws are in place to protect our school children. But what you may not know is that North Carolina insurance companies will not waive points associated with speeding in school zones. In North Carolina, we are not talking just points on your driving license or about a one-time fine for an offense. What we are talking about are penalties that really hit your wallet HARD for a long time:
- A minimum 30% increase in your auto insurance premiums for five years for a conviction for speeding in a school zone at any speed above the posted limit. Speeding through a school zone adds five points to your license and they cannot be removed from your record for three years from date of conviction. One point can increase your rate by up to 30%, while 4 points can increase your rate by as much as 80%.
- An 80% increase in your auto insurance premiums for five years for a conviction for passing a stopped school bus. Passing a school bus is 5 points on your license and 4 points for your insurance.
- The N.C. General Assembly increased the speeding penalty in school zones and on school property from $25 to $250. if you drive more than 15 milers per hour over the limit in a school zone (or any where for that matter), you will be charged with a class 3 misdemeanor, which can carry an additional sentence of 1 to 20 days in jail.
- Besides potentially having your driver’s license suspended and seeing the costs of your insurance premiums skyrocket, if you are convicted of speeding in a school zone in Charlotte, you’ll have additional court costs of $188 (that’s on top of the $250 fine).
Information about North Carolina drivers licenses and points and how they impact your insurance.
So be sure to follow the driving/speed laws in Charlotte/Mecklenburg school zones…
… You’ll keep our Charlotte school kids safe and you’ll keep your insurance premiums down.
This information about the high cost of insurance premium hikes for violating driving laws in Charlotte’s school zones and tips for safe driving in Charlotte area’s school zones is provided by Nina Hollander with Coldwell Banker, Greater Charlotte area residential real estate expert.
If you’re considering purchasing or selling a home anywhere in the Charlotte metro area, I’d love an opportunity to earn your business, exceed your expectations, and to show you why experience matters and how…
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