The main goal for Safe Routes to School (SRTS) enforcement strategies is to deter unsafe behaviors and deter unsafe behaviors of drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists and to encourage all road users to obey traffic laws and share the road safely. Enforcement is one of the complementary strategies that SRTS programs use to enable more children to walk and bicycle to school safely. But enforcement used alone will not likely have a long-term effect. Communities must utilize a combination of enforcement, engineering, education and encouragement strategies to address the specific needs of their schools and achieve long-term results.

The public typically thinks of enforcement as officers writing tickets. In fact, enforcement, especially for SRTS programs, is a network of community members working together to promote safe walking, bicycling and driving. This can be accomplished through safety awareness, education and, where necessary, the use of ticketing for dangerous behaviors. Enforcement includes students, parents, adult school crossing guards, school personnel and neighborhood watch programs all working in conjunction with law enforcement. Working together to enforce rules for safe walking, bicycling and driving makes it safer and easier for everyone to walk and bicycle.

This chapter will describe the common unsafe behaviors often encountered near schools and the multiple approaches that communities use to improve these behaviors. For more information see: