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Back to School Safety from the Dover Police Department 8-17-2017

Originally posted at: https://doverpolice.org/2017/08/17/back-to-school-safety-from-the-dover-police-department-8-17-2017/ on August 17, 2017

Summer is quickly coming to an end and families across Dover are preparing to send their children back to school in the coming weeks.  The Capital School District begins school on Thursday, August 24th and Caesar Rodney begins Monday, August 28th.  The Dover Police Department is offering the following information to better prepare the citizens we serve for Back to School week.

Police in Schools:
The Dover Police Department has a full time officer dedicated to the Dover High School, Central Middle School, William Henry Middle School, and Parkway Academy.  These officers are otherwise known as SRO’s or School Resource Officers.  We encourage parents to tell their children to communicate concerns with those officers as needed.  The department also has a G.R.E.A.T. (Gang Resistance Education And Training) Instructor at the William Henry Middle School that will also visit elementary schools on occasion as well.  In addition to our four full-time youth officers, the department will increase their presence at schools across the city during the first days of school to ensure a smooth and safe process for all children and school faculty.  There will also be increased presence by the Special Enforcement Unit Motorcycle Division in area school zones, cross walks, and bus routes to crack down on vehicle violations.  People who speed in school zones, disobey crossing guards, or pass school buses will be cited accordingly.

H.A.W.K. Traffic Signal at Dover High School
The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDot)  installed the new High-Intensity Activated CrossWalK system at the Dover High School main entrance/exit prior to the 2014-2015 school year.  This system is designed to maximize the flow of traffic in what is expected to be a congested area before and after school.  A video showing how the light works can be viewed below.

Tips for Motorists
The Dover Police Department will utilize special enforcement units to increase presence in school zones and on bus routes throughout the city to target speed violations, passing of school buses, and other driving violations that threaten the safety of school children.  The beginning of school is also a time when children are at increased risk of transportation related injuries from pedestrian, bicycle, school bus, and motor vehicle crashes because there are many more children on the road each morning and afternoon and many drivers’ patterns change. Shorter daylight hours make it especially difficult to see young pedestrians and bicyclists. So as schools open their doors, it’s time for everyone – motorists, parents, educators, and students – to improve their traffic safety practices. The following tips can help make this a safe and happy school year for the whole community.
School Bus Safety:

  • It is against the law to pass a stopped school bus while its lights are flashing and its stop arm is extended.
  • On undivided roadways, with no physical barrier or median, vehicles must stop on both sides of the roadway.
  • Yellow flashing lights indicate that the bus is preparing to load or unload children. Motorists should slow down and prepare to stop their vehicles.
  • Red flashing lights and extended stop arms indicate that the bus has stopped, and children are getting on or off. Motorists approaching from either direction must wait until the red lights stop flashing before proceeding.
  • Learn and obey the “alternately flashing warning light” system that school bus drivers use to alert motorists.

School Zone/Bus Stop Safety:

  • When a school bus or children are present slow down and proceed with caution, obeying all traffic laws and speed limits.
  • Obey School Zone speed limits & watch for flashing yellow lights, crossing guards, etc.
  • Be alert and ready to stop. Watch for children walking in the street, especially where there are no sidewalks. Watch for children playing and gathering near bus stops. Watch for children arriving late for the bus, who may dart into the street without looking for traffic. When backing out of a driveway or leaving a garage, watch for children walking or biking to school.
  • When driving in neighborhoods or school zones, watch for young people who may be in a hurry to get to school and may not be thinking about getting there safely.

Walk/Bike to School:

  • Practice taking the route your child will walk before school.
  • Always wear a bicycle helmet, no matter how short or long the ride.
  • Ride on the right, in the same direction as auto traffic.
  • Use appropriate hand signals.
  • Respect traffic lights and stop signs.
  • Wear bright-colored clothing to increase visibility. White or light-colored clothing and reflective gear is especially important after dark.
  • Know the “rules of the road.”
  • Make sure your child’s walk to school is a safe route with well-trained adult crossing guards at every intersection.
  • Identify other children in the neighborhood with whom your child can walk to school.  In neighborhoods with higher levels of traffic, consider organizing a “walking school bus,” in which an adult accompanies a group of neighborhood children walking to school.
  • Be realistic about your child’s pedestrian skills. Because small children are impulsive and less cautious around traffic, carefully consider whether or not your child is ready to walk to school without adult supervision.
  • If your children are young or are walking to a new school, walk with them the first week or until you are sure they know the route and can do it safely.
  • Bright-colored clothing will make your child more visible to drivers.

Back to School Traffic Safety Tips are from the National Safety Council:

If You’re Dropping Off

Schools often have very specific drop-off procedures for the school year. Make sure you know them for the safety of all kids. More children are hit by cars near schools than at any other location, according to the National Safe Routes to School program. The following apply to all school zones:

  • Don’t double park; it blocks visibility for other children and vehicles
  • Don’t load or unload children across the street from the school
  • Carpool to reduce the number of vehicles at the school

Sharing the Road with Young Pedestrians

According to research by the National Safety Council, most of the children who lose their lives in bus-related incidents are 4 to 7 years old, and they’re walking. They are hit by the bus, or by a motorist illegally passing a stopped bus. A few precautions go a long way toward keeping children safe:

  • Don’t block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn, forcing pedestrians to go around you; this could put them in the path of moving traffic
  • In a school zone when flashers are blinking, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection
  • Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign
  • Take extra care to look out for children in school zones, near playgrounds and parks, and in all residential areas
  • Don’t honk or rev your engine to scare a pedestrian, even if you have the right of way
  • Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians
  • Always use extreme caution to avoid striking pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way

Sharing the Road with School Buses

If you’re driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It will give you more time to stop once the yellow lights start flashing. It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children.

  • Never pass a bus from behind – or from either direction if you’re on an undivided road – if it is stopped to load or unload children
  • If the yellow or red lights are flashing and the stop arm is extended, traffic must stop
  • The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus
  • Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks

Sharing the Road with Bicyclists

On most roads, bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as vehicles, but bikes can be hard to see. Children riding bikes create special problems for drivers because usually they are not able to properly determine traffic conditions. The most common cause of collision is a driver turning left in front of a bicyclist.

  • When passing a bicyclist, proceed in the same direction slowly, and leave 3 feet between your car and the cyclist
  • When turning left and a bicyclist is approaching in the opposite direction, wait for the rider to pass
  • If you’re turning right and a bicyclists is approaching from behind on the right, let the rider go through the intersection first, and always use your turn signals
  • Watch for bike riders turning in front of you without looking or signaling; children especially have a tendency to do this
  • Be extra vigilant in school zones and residential neighborhoods
  • Watch for bikes coming from driveways or behind parked cars
  • Check side mirrors before opening your door

By exercising a little extra care and caution, drivers and pedestrians can co-exist safely in school zones.

Bullying:

Bullying or cyberbullying is when one child picks on another child repeatedly. Bullying can be physical, verbal, or social. It can happen at school, on the playground, on the school bus, in the neighborhood, over the Internet, or through mobile devices like cell phones.  The Dover Police Department has full-time officers dedicated to the Central Middle School, Dover High School, and Parkway Academy with another officer that spends time in William Henry Middle School and the various elementary schools throughout the city.

When Your Child Is Bullied

  • Help your child learn how to respond by teaching your child how to:
    1. Look the bully in the eye.
    2. Stand tall and stay calm in a difficult situation.
    3. Walk away.
  • Teach your child how to say in a firm voice.
    1. “I don’t like what you are doing.”
    2. “Please do NOT talk to me like that.”
    3. “Why would you say that?”
  • Teach your child when and how to ask a trusted adult for help.
  • Encourage your child to make friends with other children.
  • Support activities that interest your child.
  • Alert school officials to the problems and work with them on solutions.
  • Make sure an adult who knows about the bullying can watch out for your child’s safety and well-being when you cannot be there.
  • Monitor your child’s social media or texting interactions so you can identify problems before they get out of hand.

When Your Child Is the Bully

  • Be sure your child knows that bullying is never OK.
  • Set firm and consistent limits on your child’s aggressive behavior.
  • Be a positive role mode. Show children they can get what they want without teasing, threatening or hurting someone.
  • Use effective, non-physical discipline, such as loss of privileges.
  • Develop practical solutions with the school principal, teachers, counselors, and parents of the children your child has bullied.

When Your Child Is a Bystander

  • Tell your child not to cheer on or even quietly watch bullying.
  • Encourage your child to tell a trusted adult about the bullying.
  • Help your child support other children who may be bullied. Encourage your child to include these children in activities.
  • Encourage your child to join with others in telling bullies to stop.

Teen Driving:

  • Keep Your Cell Phone Off
    Multiple studies indicate using a cell phone while driving is the equivalent of driving drunk―that’s even when using a hands-free phone. Besides, your state may prohibit the use of cell phones while driving. Many do for drivers of certain ages.
  • Don’t Text
    Research shows texting―on average―causes a loss of focus on the road for five seconds. A lot can go wrong in those five seconds.  Don’t try the “texting-while-stopped” approach, either. And, when you have your head down, you won’t notice key developments that may occur, even when you’re stuck at a red light.
  • Turn on Your Headlights
    Doing so can increase your visibility and help other drivers see you, even on sunny days.
  • Obey the Speed Limit
    Speeding causes about 40% of all fatal teen accidents. That’s especially true when driving on roads with lots of traffic or you’re not familiar with.  Don’t feel pressured to keep up with traffic if it seems like everyone else is flying by you. Driving a safe speed helps ensure your well-being, and keeps you away from costly traffic tickets that can cause a sharp hike in your car insurance.
  • Minimize Distractions
    It may be tempting to eat, drink, flip around the radio dial, or play music loudly while you’re cruising around town; however, all can cause your mind or vision to wander, even for a few seconds. And, that can be enough for an inexperienced driver to lose control of your car, or not notice an obstacle in the road.
  • Drive Solo
    Having a single teen passenger in your car can double the risk of causing a car accident. Adding additional teen passengers causes the risk to escalate.
  • Practice Defensive Driving
    Always be aware of the traffic ahead, behind, and next to you, and have possible escape routes in mind. Stay a safe distance behind the car in front of you in slower speeds, and maintain a larger buffer zone with faster speeds.  A good way to judge a proper distance is to count 2 seconds from the time the front of your car passes where the rear of the car in front of you passed

 

 

Delaware State News: Levy Court lays groundwork for U.S. 13 sewer main project

May 2nd, 2017 · by Ian Gronau ·

DOVER — Kent County Levy Court moved toward securing engineering services to plan the replacement of almost 3 miles of sewer pipe along U.S. 13 in Dover at their public works committee meeting on Tuesday night.

The area slated for the extensive “force main rehabilitation project” begins at the county pump station near Delaware Technical Community College’s Terry Campus and terminates near Garden Lane by the Capital Commons shopping area.

According to the county’s public works director, Andy Jakubowitch, beginning the project in the fall may be possible after funding is secured.

The original sewer pipe that rests beneath Route 13 is a concrete one from the 1970s that was recently discovered to be in a serious state of disrepair.

“We had two main breaks recently on Route 13 near the Wawa. Through some investigation, we found that the pipe is in pretty bad shape,” said Mr. Jakubowitch.

During the committee meeting, Mr. Jakubowitch noted that the two possible funding sources his department is pursuing are DNREC and USDA.

“If DNREC funds the project, the labor would be subject to the state wage rates,” he said. “We’re leaning toward the USDA to avoid that. The market’s rates tends to be cheaper than state’s.”

After securing funding, the public works department would need to perform a preliminary engineering report and an environmental impact study — something Mr. Jakubowitch hopes to have in place by mid-summer. At that point, contractors can bid on the project.

The project, unavoidably, would affect traffic, said Mr. Jakubowitch. However, because of the method being used, disruptions could be minimized.

“The work we’re planning on doing would be trenchless,” he said. “We’d use access holes instead, and we’d space them out so we’re not going through intersections. We’d stop work for race days, holidays and things like that as well — like we have in the past.”

Successfully completing the rehabilitation project would also likely address a lingering odor problems that hovers around the Home Depot and Acme on Leipsic Road.

According to Dover public works director Sharon Duca and Mr. Jakubowitch, the odor is from added wastewater flow that’s been “temporarily” diverted from the county’s transmission line under Route 13 to the city’s pump station at the site.

This arrangement was made necessary because of Route 13’s compromised force main. When the rehabilitation project is complete, the added flow can be returned safely to the Route 13 line. For now though, the county’s public works department is using a “blower system” in the city’s pump station to help mitigate the odor.

“We have a temporary blower system that has helped a bit with the odor,” said Mr. Jakubowitch. “We ordered a new blower system that will probably have installed some time next week.”

Reach staff writer Ian Gronau at igronau@newszap.com

 

Original story here: http://delawarestatenews.net/news/levy-court-lays-groundwork-u-s-13-sewer-main-project/

Commissioner Glen Howell supports Jim Hosfelt

I strongly endorse and support Jim Hosfelt for the 2nd District of Levy Court. Jim is well known and well liked for many reasons. He will contribute greatly to the standing Levy Court. Well reasoned and sensible people are in demand everywhere. Jim fits that description. He is objective and practical as well as approachable and sincere. Please vote for Hosfelt on March 21.

Thank you
Glen M. Howell
Commissioner, 6th Levy Court District

Commissioner Eric Buckson supports Jim Hosfelt

I write this letter as a show of support for Jim Hosfelt who is
running for the seat vacated by former commissioner Brad Eaby. I’ve
known Jim personally for many years and believe he will make an
outstanding addition to Levy Court. Jim Hosfelt has distinguished
himself through a lifetime of public service, joining the United
States Air Force early in life and then transitioning to a police
officer in the City of Dover.  After rising to the rank of Police
Chief, Jim Hosfelt retired and joined the Dover International Speedway
administrative team. In keeping with his belief that serving others is
in his blood, he was elected to and currently serves on the Dover City
Council.

Levy Court, more commonly known as County Council, plays a key role in
many aspects of everyday life. Commissioners are tasked with setting
tax rates and fees as well as managing a multi-million dollar budget
that includes public safety, public works, planning, code enforcement,
parks/rec and many other functions. On March 21st, voters in the 2nd
District of the county will go to the polls and decide who their next
commissioner will be. The 2nd District includes parts of South Dover
extending west of Wyoming, Hartly, and North Dover.

I have had the privilege of serving on Levy Court for the past 10
years. During that time commissioners have dealt with issues ranging
from the simple to very complex. The key to Levy Courts success has
been the ability to have commissioners push partisan politics aside
and focus on doing what is right. It is without hesitation that I
offer my endorsement of Jim Hosfelt for Levy Court Commissioner for
the 2nd District. I am confident that Jim Hosfelt will be a positive
addition to Levy Courts continued effort to put the county residents
first.

Sincerely,
Eric Buckson
Commissioner – 4th Levy Court District

Jim Hosfelt on the radio

“Hello. My name is Jim Hosfelt and I am running for Kent County Levy Court in the 2nd district.

Over the last 2 years as a Dover City Councilman, and the last 8 weeks while I campaigning for Levy Court, the residents of the 2nd district have been sharing neighborhood concerns.

As a homeowner, I agree that public safety and land use issues are areas of concern that we share as County residents.

I am a common sense decision maker. I listen to my constituents and I’m here to help.

Come out on March 21st and vote for Jim Hosfelt.”

 

 

Sherry Hosfelt on the Radio

“Hello, my name is Sherry Hosfelt. My husband, Jim, is running for Kent County Levy Court in the 2nd district.

I wanted to let you know, we have been out talking to local farmers and small business people in our county, and Jim hears you!

Jim is a manager. He has worked to improve systems throughout his career, as the Chief of Police in Dover, as a Dover City Councilman, and as the current Director of Public Safety at Dover International Speedway.

He hears you and he’s here to help. Come out on March 21st and vote for my husband, Jim Hosfelt.”