Safety warning for rural drivers as school starts

A yellow sign that says "school zone".
Photo credit: Newshub.

There's a reminder for drivers on rural roads to take extra care as children across the country head back to school.

Rural Women New Zealand (RWNZ) is urging drivers to be mindful of the 20km/h speed limit when passing school buses.

It said the number of fatalities on open roads and rural state highways was significantly higher than urban roads in 2018, which is particularly concerning for rural families.

"Our children often travel to school along treacherous open roads used by logging trucks or milk tankers," said RWNZ education portfolio convenor, Sue Higgins.

"It is essential that parents in rural New Zealand can rely on the school bus service as the safest mode of transport for their children.

"To keep our children safe on their journeys to and from school, New Zealand drivers must adhere to the 20km/h speed limit when passing school buses."