The safety of our schools is an important part of a functioning community. A safe and effective school traffic management plan benefits the kids on their way to school and the parents who can have peace of mind knowing their families are safe at all times.
But traffic management and school safety aren’t things that happen naturally. They need planning, testing, and solid action from school management, staff and everyone else using the school’s facilities and roads.
Here we explain how to maximise safety with a school traffic management plan, plus how to get started with a traffic management plan checklist.
What is a school traffic management plan?
A school traffic management plan, or TMP, is a way of ensuring students can travel safely to and from school. It encompasses everything from pedestrian safety, car safety, and other modes of transport both in and around the school grounds.
Aims of a school traffic management plan
A TMP aims to achieve a safer school environment for all students, parents, staff, and the public in general.
Here are some of the key goals a successful traffic management plan will achieve:
- Safe and universal access to the school
- Calm and smooth traffic flow in pickup and drop-off zones
- Less congestion at peak hour
- Easy to use and well-marked bike lanes
- Trusted and supportive community
How to develop a school traffic management plan?
Traffic management plans work best when the whole community is on board.
That’s why it’s important to hear suggestions and concerns from everyone who will be affected. That includes:
- Local community members
- Local business owners
- Local council
- Schoolchildren themselves
Ultimately, you want a safe and secure environment for the students – and working towards that goal with as many people involved as possible will only strengthen compliance and awareness.
Traffic management plan checklist
For the school management team, having a checklist to refer back to and inform your TMP is critical.
Here’s a checklist of essentials:
1. Understand your school traffic environment
You can’t implement anything without first understanding how traffic moves around your school. To understand this, you’ll need data. There are a few factors to consider here:
- The size of the school
- The school’s location and nature of the roads surrounding it
- Number of people who walk, ride, drive or catch the bus into school
- Local traffic environment
Compiling data on these factors will inform what strategies you implement and how.
2. Ensure proper wayfinding
Intuitive wayfinding is a hallmark of any well-thought-through school traffic management plan. When people (especially stressed-out parents) can easily navigate in and around the school campus, the less congested the roads become.
Wayfinding should be universally accessible. That means easy-to-read signage for all age groups, and designed with the correct Australian standards in mind.
Note: the Australian wayfinding standardswere updated in 2018. They are likely to be included as compulsory guidelines in the National Construction Code (NCC) from 2022 onwards. As such, we recommend implementing these guidelines in design briefs from now on.
3. Install speed humps in the right places
Pick-up and drop-off zones, high-traffic areas, and roads with adjacent footpaths leading into and throughout the school should be integrated with speed bumps to ensure speed limit compliance and general caution. Various types of speed humps exist to encourage different driving styles. For more information on what speed bumps would work best in and around your school, reach out to the team here at Image Extra.
4. Enforce School Zone speed limits and signs
School zone speed limits and signs should be adapted to your school surroundings. Ensuing the signs are positioned to account for traffic movements that might occur further outside the school parameters is essential. Look back to your traffic movement data to inform exactly where these signs should be positioned. It could be worth reaching out to the local council for more ideas on how to enforce local speed limits if this is an issue you’re dealing with on a regular basis.
5. Install safety bollards around key walkways and infrastructure
Ensuring the safety of students and the wider public is essential – and safety bollards play a big role in creating safe walkways in heavy traffic areas, and can prevent injury or death. Installing safety bollards along critical sections of road where high pedestrian activity, or critical infrastructure is in close contact with moving cars will greatly improve your safety management system.
6. Stock removable bollards and traffic cones for special events
It’s always good to stock several removable bollards and traffic cones to ensure traffic compliance on special occasions such as graduation day, open days, or school festivals where increased traffic and parking demands can put the safety of students and others at a higher risk. If you need to stock up removable bollards, visit our site – or get in touch with our safety experts, we’ll be happy to speak about your needs.
7. Meet your disabled parking obligations
Disabled parking is an important part of your traffic safety plan. Without adequate disabled parking, you run the risk of heavy fines and endangering people in the community. The exact number of disabled parking bays required will depend on the size of the school, and other local factors. If you want to learn more about disabled parking regulations and what you need to do to stay above board – read our article on disabled parking bay requirements.
Improve your TMP: speak to Image Extra
Traffic management issues can become a headache if not tackled effectively and with the right safety products. To ensure your school is meeting its obligations, it’s important to install safety equipment that meets Australian standards and serves its purpose in keeping your school community safe.
Find out more about how we can help you meet your obligations and implement a successful school traffic management plan. Give us a call today on 1300 366 999 or simply reach out online.