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Parking Lot Traffic Threatens Student Safety

Inigo Lintag, News Editor

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   As of late, the traffic in the University City area has been getting progressively worse. Although some may blame factors such as late start and other complications that accompany daily driving routes, the real culprits are drivers and their horrendous parking lot practices.

   Drivers dropping off their students in an improper way can cause major traffic blockages and are often safety hazards. When dropping their kids off, some drivers stop to unload in the middle of an already congested lane in a high-traffic area, causing traffic jams and potentially risking their children’s safety. Additionally, during the after school parking lot rush, parents will park in active driving lanes to wait for their children, causing major back-ups and disabling the use of the main parking lot exit.

   One concern is, of course, safety, and the aforementioned practice is not very safe. According to the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) official website, to ensure a student’s safety on the way to school drivers should “arrive early… and use the school’s designated drop-off and pick-up zones.” The district also urges drivers to only allow students to leave their cars from the “curb-side” of the road when being dropped off (sandiegounified.org).

   These rules are put in place to ensure that everyone is kept out of danger and that traffic flows at a decent pace. According to an article on the CBS News website, at least 60,000 people are injured in more than 50,000 crashes that occur in parking lots or garages. Apart from those 60,000 people, 500 people are killed in parking lot accidents (cbsnews.com). Throughout the last several years, we have had a number of traffic accidents occur on or around our campus.

   All drivers — parents, students, and teachers included — need to begin abiding by the proper traffic safety rules even while in the parking lot. If caught in violation of any of these rules, there may be legal consequences. According to the SDUSD website, “Police officers are issuing citations for traffic violations and there is no warning or grace period” (sandiegounified.org).

   The UC High parking lot also isn’t mapped out  in a way that encourages a constant and fluid flow of traffic. This is already a major issue, but it is only made worse by bad traffic practices. If these practices continue, congestion — not only of the school parking lot but of the entirety of Genesee Avenue — will be an inevitability.

   Furthermore, all of this traffic causes an environmental hazard. According to USA Today, traffic can cause long delays, increases in the consumption of gasoline, pollution, increased instances of road rage, and an inability for emergency services to respond efficiently (usatoday.com).

   If UC High can’t improve its parking practices soon, we will be unable to deal with the consequences of the traffic. These practices are not only unsafe and inefficient but also illegal and punishable by law. In short, everyone’s lives would be so much easier if people in the parking lot would just follow the rules.

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Parking Lot Traffic Threatens Student Safety