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School Zone Laws in Arizona

By The Husband and Wife Law Team on February 7, 2022

School zone laws are designed to protect children commuting to and from school. Their safety should be our highest priority. It is important to be extra cautious and know what you need to do in school zones to avoid causing injury to children or others. School zones are zero-tolerance areas. Even a minor traffic offense, such as driving a mile per hour or two over the posted speed limit, could get you pulled over and cited. Traffic fines are doubled for violations that happen in school zones.

How Is a School Zone Defined in Arizona?

School zones are marked areas around schools where children are required to cross a street or highway. They are marked with portable signage indicating that school is in session. Depending on the county and the situation, this signage may consist of:

  • 35 mph school zone signs: This speed limit may be in effect all day, every day, or it may only be in effect on certain days, during certain times, or when lights are flashing.
  • 15 mph school zone signs: Typically, these signs are placed manually, with a traffic guard present, at certain times, as when school is letting out for the day. They are preceded by permanent, fluorescent yellow, pentagon-shaped signs showing figures of two school children walking.
  • Road markers: Signage designating a school zone may take the form of markers on the road, such as the word “SCHOOL” stenciled on the pavement, or obvious crosswalk paintings. School zone crosswalks are painted yellow. When 15 mph speed limits are in effect, a portable sign is placed at the yellow crosswalk that states, “STOP WHEN CHILDREN IN CROSSWALK.”

What Are the Special Rules in Arizona School Zones?

Special traffic rules apply to school zones in Arizona:

  • No passing is allowed. No matter how slow the car in front of you is going, legally, you cannot pass in a school zone.
  • Speed limits are strict. You could be cited for going one mile per hour over the limit and pay a double fine as a penalty.
  • Pedestrians have the right of way. Drivers are required to stop for anyone in a school zone crosswalk – children, adults, or crossing guards – and only proceed after all pedestrians exit the crosswalk.
  • Drivers required to stop for school buses. Stop when a school bus stops and puts on its stop sign and lights. This rule applies to drivers traveling in both directions. Do not proceed until the bus lights are off, the doors are closed, and the bus has pulled away. Even then, proceed cautiously, watching carefully for children who may dart across the street.

What Should You Do If Your Child Has Been Injured by a Driver While Walking in a School Zone?

Drivers have a responsibility to comply strictly with the laws enacted to protect our children in school zones. If your child has been injured by a driver while walking in a school zone, speak with an experienced Phoenix child injury lawyer as soon as possible. You may have a claim for compensation against the driver who caused your child’s injuries. You may be entitled to recover for your child’s past and future medical expenses related to the accident, lost earnings from time away from work, your child’s physical pain and suffering, and other losses.

Why Choose Us?

The Husband & Wife Law Team practices only injury and wrongful death law. We have the knowledge and skills to thoroughly investigate your child’s accident, collect evidence to support your claim, assess the full extent of your damages, negotiate skillfully with insurance companies on your behalf, and fight for the compensation your family deserves in court, if necessary. If your child has been hurt in a school zone accident, call us today at (602) 457-6222 to find out how we can help.

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