School Wardens throughout South Dublin County Council (SDCC) are calling for all road users to ‘STOP! for the LOLLIPOP’ as part of a new campaign being launched by SDCC this November. Each morning, and afternoon, School Wardens face many challenges in the delivery of a safe crossing service for primary children. Incident data recorded at school crossings show that, over the last five years, 29% of all recorded incidents at a school crossing is a driver, motorcyclist or cyclist failing to stop.

Not many people know that a School Warden is legally empowered to stop traffic to facilitate a safer crossing for children on the journey to, and from, school. So, what should you do on approach to a school crossing? All road users should be extra vigilant around schools and near school crossings by reducing their speed and being free from distraction. In accordance with the rules of the road, road users should always observe the instructions of the School Warden and remain stopped until the school warden has safely returned to their position on the footpath. Failure to stop for the School Warden carries the threat of penalty points and fine for a motorist, and a fixed charge notice for cyclists. However, a fine and penalty point fail in comparison to the damage that can be done when a road user fails to stop at a school crossing.

As part of the campaign primary schools, serviced by School Wardens, will be sent a campaign pack consisting of a poster, key rings and a #stopforthelollipop campaign sheet to help spread the school crossing safety message throughout the wider school community. “School wardens provide an excellent service in creating a safer environment to enable children to independently walk, scoot or cycle to school and fellow road users must play their part in observing the instructions of a School Warden to create safer spaces outside our schools.” Ally Menary, Road Safety Officer, SDCC.

Caption: School Warden – Jim Smith with pupils from St Peter the Apostle S.N.S., Neilstown, Clondalkin and Garda Tom Conway Ronanstown Garda Station.