Is your school’s parking lot safe enough?

School parking lots are one aspect of school safety that’s sometimes overlooked by parents, administrators, and even the maintenance staff. What many people don’t realize is that a school parking lot can be a dangerous place for children and pedestrians alike, due in part to the high volume of car traffic before and after school.

The maintenance staff are usually tasked with the parking lot upkeep, and as with most schools in the U.S., they’re working on razor-thin budgets. This means some aspects of parking lot safety may be overlooked, under-budgeted, or understaffed.

We’re going to look at several ways that schools and school districts in Washington State can work to ensure that their parking lots are as safe as they possibly can be.

Pavement Markings

A school parking lot at the beginning and end of a school day is a proverbial bird’s nest of parents and guardians dropping off and picking up their children. Many school parking lots have faded pavement markings which make it hard for drivers to distinguish the proper flow of traffic.

This can lead to minor fender-benders, or worse yet – a child being accidentally run over because the pavement markings were faded. Proper and clearly identifiable pavement markings can help improve the flow of traffic. Cars inside the school parking lot can travel more efficiently, and this helps prevent a long line of cars on the outside street.

Parking Lot Signage

Parking lot and road safety begins with easy to see and understand signage. In some schools, Administrators have been forced to use those orange traffic safety cones which need to be manually placed on the ground before and after school gets out.

This takes up extra time and requires personnel to perform the duties of a traffic safety officer. Proper parking lot signage can help reduce the need for someone to direct the flow of traffic in and out. It also can improve the safety factor by clearly designating the proper way that traffic should flow.

Crack Sealing and Filling

The Pacific Northwest gets wet weather throughout most of the year. Water is the #1 enemy of pavement and will get inside the tiniest of cracks. Over the course of a few short months, water will cause the cracks to widen to the point where potholes will emerge.

These potholes are dangerous to both people and cars. In the wintertime, a pothole can form overnight, fill up with water, and turn into an invisible puddle of black ice. People and children can easily slip and fall on these hidden parking lot safety hazards.

To avoid potential safety hazards, you should seal and fill asphalt cracks before they become dangerous potholes. These small cracks can quickly turn into bigger ones as well as significantly reduce the lifespan of the asphalt itself. If left unchecked and untreated, the lot will need to be repaved completely.

School Parking Lot Repair and Maintenance

Spring is almost here, and this is the perfect time of the year to get your school parking lots repaired or replaced. At Stripe Rite, we have decades of experience performing pavement marking and other asphalt-related jobs. Give us a call at (800) 427-0484 to learn how we can help you make your school parking lot safer.