40km/h school zones have been installed at all access points at NSW schools. These zones are complemented with large yellow road pavement patches showing ?40? at the start of each school zone.
Despite an extensive media campaign alerting motorists to the rationale for school speed zones, there remain a percentage of motorists who fail to comply with these zones and subsequently place school children at risk.
It is recognised that there are two potential motorist problems at school zones. The first is those motorists who chose not to comply with 40km/h school zones. This is ultimately an enforcement issue and strategies are being identified in consultation with the police to negate this problem. The second problem relates to motorists who fail to see the school zone sign. In some instances, this is as a result of schools whose visibility to the motorists is not optimal i.e. schools set back from the road or located on a blind bend. For a selection of these schools, a trial of flashing signs has been commenced to ascertain whether additional enhancements such as flashing signs, at the commencement of the school zone, can result in a greater awareness of the school zone and thus a sustainable reduction of speed in school zones.
This trial has been in place for 3 terms of the 2003 school year. Interim results indicate that these signs have limited benefit when used over time.