Car Rider Parents: No blocking Mechanic Street and no cell phones

LOCAL NEWS — With over 200 car riders this year at Lynchburg Elementary School (LES), some afternoons at around 2:45 p.m. are organized chaos around Mechanic Street. It can be frustrating for parents, law enforcement, and school officials.

Over the past year, Moore County school officials and Metro Moore County Sheriff’s Department Student Resource Officer (SRO) Mike Rainey, who is assigned to LES, collaborated solutions to make things run as smooth as possible considering the larger number of vehicles. Together, they painted four car rider lines in the bus parking lot to accommodate parents and enough space for two additional lines on the days there is overflow, according to Wendy Hart who administers transportation and school safety for the Moore County system

The first parents to arrive should line up in the far left lane. When that lane is full, vehicles should fill into the next line to the right … and so on.

“Parents who get there after the lanes begin to empty, are supposed to fall in line beginning left to right, but those late cars aren’t allowed to cut in front of the cars that were already lined up,” said Hart.

Once all car rider lines are full, no car should park or idle blocking Mechanic Street. It’s a public road that must remain clear in the event that an emergency vehicle needs to respond to the school or an area home, SRO Rainey explained in a letter distributed to parents prior to the school year. Instead, parents can line up at the Lynchburg First Baptist Church parking lot if there is not a church function happening. In the event that that area becomes full, parents should turn left on Spriggs Avenue and form a line at the Lynchburg Cemetery until the buses leave.

SRO Rainey also reminded parents not to show up until after 2:45 p.m. to allow time for school buses to clear. School dismisses at 2:45 p.m. and it usually takes students another five minutes to gather their things and load onto buses. It takes an additional few minutes for the buses to clear LES. In reality, even the the first car riders parents won’t reach kids until closer to 3 p.m.

There are a couple of other details car rider parents should remember. One, there is a new 10 mile per hour speed limit in the school zone, which will be strictly enforced. Two, as of July 1, Tennessee now bans hand-held cell phone use while driving. This includes while at red lights, when parked, or idling. If a violation occurs in a school zone when warning flashers are present, the fine is $200.

Officials added additional signage this week. MMCSD deputies are usually present to help direct traffic unless they get redirected to an emergency.

Anyone with questions or concerns can direct them to Hart in the Moore County School Central Office at 931-759-7303. •

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently owned and operated newspaper that publishes new stories every morning. Covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

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