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Why is no one doing anything about the unsafe driving around Pine Valley Elementary School?

John Peaspanen
StarNews

Q. Why is no one doing anything about the unsafe driving around Pine Valley Elementary School? The park any way they want and any place they want.

A. You are not alone in your concerns. School officials are addressing the issue.

According to New Hanover County Schools Chief Communications Officer Valita Quattlebaum, “The staff at Pine Valley Elementary School has worked on the traffic concerns; and there is a proper procedure for student drop-off at Pine Valley. Sometimes, people don’t follow the established rules and traffic procedures and that creates congestion.”

“Student safety is always our primary concern and always takes precedence over driver convenience,” added Quattlebaum. “There have been complaints to the school relative to drivers parking, as well dropping off students, in unauthorized areas.”

Quattlebaum said NHCS has contacted law enforcement and addressed the issue of student safety with parents.

Aware of the congestion around Pine Valley, Quattlebaum said the district safety director has visited the site multiple times, observing the traffic patterns and the arrival and dismissal process in the morning and afternoon.

“The City of Wilmington traffic engineer has also been involved relative to street traffic,” said Quattlebaum. “The school staff monitors the arrival and dismissal each day. The school has also established a check-out system to monitor student movement during the dismissal process.

“Pine Valley also has put a plan into place, so that children should not be dropped off and made to walk across traffic, bus lanes, and through the parking lot where cars are moving.”

RELATED LINKS:

Can something be done to help with traffic congestion on Holly Tree Road in the afternoons?

Can anything be done to ease traffic backups on 41st Street near Hoggard High School?

 

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3 Responses to “ Why is no one doing anything about the unsafe driving around Pine Valley Elementary School?”

  1. On December 6, 2012 at 9:31 pm Melody Jennings wrote:

    I applaud the school and the city for beginning to address this issue. Given the fact that the school was built years ago and not for today’s situation there is probably not a lot that can be done. I do hope when upgrades are done the school board considers the traffic and safety issues. Maybe they should look at building a new school in the area with more access. If nothing else, perhaps a separate teacher and staff parking area would help or a separate bus access would alleviate traffic congestion. The city should probably look at upgrading their rules and consider not allowing parking in any part of the right of ways; be it curbed or uncurbed and not allow any parking on John D Barry Drive or John S Mosby. More daily enforcement might also help.
    I personally think the biggest problem is the parents themselves. I live across from the school and I have seen first-hand many issues. Along with the improper parking (even parking directly under the No Parking signs), entering the bus area(where it is clearly marked Do Not Enter),to drop offs where cars just stop on John D Barry Drive, to criss crossing the road to park (where is it mark No Parking), to speeding, to totally ignoring the school crossing guard, to pedestrians crossing the road everywhere instead of the designated cross walk, to making u turns almost hitting other parked cars or blocking traffic coming down John D Barry, and crossing the grassy right of way area coming up on the sidewalks, to driving down sidewalks .
    I personally have had to deal with people blocking me in my driveway and using my driveway as their turn around ( at times coming close to hitting my son who is in a wheelchair) as we are trying to leave our yard and head down the sidewalk towards the cross walk. Surprisingly, when I have said something to these individuals they get upset with me and some have had some uncalled “choice words” for me.
    It is amazing to me that people feel they have every right to be rude and beyond that, they choose to not follow laws and rules that are in place for everyone’s safety- just for their own convenience. It amazes me that if the police are in the area most people tend to follow the rules and drive much more safely but the very next time the police are not around they go right back to doing what they want. Everyone should be concerned enough to follow the rules. If they don’t know the city’s rules regarding parking they should look at the city’s website (Places You Cannot Park at Any Time-http://www.wilmingtonnc.gov/development_services/traffic_transportation/regulations_and_restrictions/)& (city ordinance -http://library.municode.com/index.aspx?clientId=14101). As far as the school’s rules, notices have been sent home several times.
    Regardless of the rules, though, it just seems like common sense should prevail. Parents need to look at the example they are setting. Their actions are telling their children that it is ok to be disrespectful and unsafe if it is inconvenient . Shouldn’t they want to be safe and responsible without having to be forced into it? What they should be thinking about is: is the extra five minutes I save ignoring everything but what I want worth someone’s life?

  2. On February 22, 2013 at 10:26 am ashli wrote:

    why don’t the police do more. they don’t seem to enforce the law. Why are all these people driving. If they don’t live in the district then perhaps the school board needs to look at their policy. if they are going to accept kids not in the district maybe they need to change their policy from they must provide their own transportation to if you live out of the district and you want to attend the school you must ride the bus. Why doesn’t the school board do more with the property to ease the problem that they are creating?

  3. On June 5, 2013 at 12:53 am Gramps wrote:

    You should do a follow up on this story. Nothing has changed. They sent out some notices at the beginning of the school year but did not enforce anything so shortly after the hype died down everything went right back to the way it was. Actually you should not announce it, just show up at various times and start taking pictures. Pay particular attention to the ADA violations of blocked access on the sidewalks as well as the ignoring of not parking within 25 feet of a stop sign or within a line of sight. The city and the school board will say they are not responsible, it is the drivers and they can not control what they do but under the ADA they are coupable. They are allowing it and doing anything to block the drivers. It is sad that you should have to treat them like children but if that is what it takes then that is what it takes. Block them out from where they shouldn’t be. Tow them, ticket them, do what it takes.

    The school is allowing it by not creating someplace for the cars to go and by holding on to the argument that all the schools have this problem and not being willing to address the issues or plan appropriately for growth since the school was built. Somebody somewhere has got to have common sense. Somebody, somewhere has got to be a leader.

    I finally had enough of the rights of the many outdoing the law and the few who obey it . I just moved out of the area because I couldn’t take it anymore. These parents act like they are above the law and just think about the example they are setting. I guess in this case they are above the law since nothing ever happens to them. Someone ought to file with the justice department against the city, county and the school board. Isn’t enough already. Someone in authority needs to do something. Another school year has come and gone and they sit on their XXXXX pretending they don’t know anything about what is going on. Truth be told, they know, they are just choosing to ignore it until some one gets hurt and they are legally forced to deal with it. Besides, if they don’t live in the area then they don’t have to care about. The neighborhood and the parents that actually do care should rise up because we all know that the squeaky wheel gets the grease.



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