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Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Traffic in Fort Thomas has changed, here's what a police lieutenant wants you to know

Fort Thomas consistently ranks highly with regard to safety.

Always a stalwart on top-ten lists that rank the safest cities in Kentucky, the bedroom community of 16,500 people places an emphasis on schools, housing stock and keeping its residents safe.

Now open on Memorial Parkway in Fort Thomas! 
With new traffic patterns and school routines, Fort Thomas Police Lt. Will Hunt wanted to give the community some need-to-know information regarding crosswalks, school buses and routines around the Highlands campus and Johnson Valley.

"Change in the community is inevitable and it's our job to make sure we understand how new traffic patterns and changes to keep everyone of our residents as safe as possible," said Lt. Hunt.

RELATED: 8 Things Fort Thomas Police Want You to Know

"School construction and adding school buses has made things a little different than what we are used to in Fort Thomas, but we all need to embrace that change and accept some new responsibilities that go along with that."

Crosswalks and Crossing Guards

New crosswalk beacons with flashing lights and yellow signs: drivers, please yield; pedestrians, just press the button!

Bike riders are NOT pedestrians, and they must follow traffic direction signs. If on a bike and crossing the street, please walk your bike.

Please follow the directions of the crossing guards.  They’re here to provide a service to our students and residents.

Not every school and crosswalk has a crossing guard; drivers: please pay attention to people waiting to cross.

School Buses

We now have multiple buses picking up students around the city, please know that EVERY bus stop within the city limits require require vehicles to stop completely when the flashing stop sign is out.  Here is a link to laws governing school buses:

Please do not “cut through” parking lots to go around and avoid waiting for the bus to load or unload.  We’ve had complaints of cars going through St. Catherine lot to avoid waiting for the bus.

Please remember, it only takes three-four minutes at most for buses to load or unload the students, PLEASE be patient.

Johnson Valley and the car line

With the move to Johnson Valley, vehicle and pedestrian traffic has picked up around the Highlands High and Highlands Middle School.  If you find yourself running into the same traffic backups, consider adjusting your arrival or departure time five minutes or so.

The morning car line fills up quickly and if you arrive once it is full, you may be directed by a crossing guard or police officer to either pull curbside or “make a loop”.  Please do not just wait at the entrance to the loop, this backs up north or southbound traffic, causing problems towards other intersections.  Once this happens, it takes some time for everything to clear up and get moving again.

The buses arriving to pick up or drop off students are a priority, so understand that you may be held up a few minutes so that the buses can get into the loop and load/unload.  Again, a full bus takes only 3 to 5 minutes to unload, and they unload simultaneously.

The staff at Johnson are doing their best to get the students loaded and unloaded through the car line and buses each day.  As of right now, they cannot open the car line until approximately 7:30 a.m., so staff can arrive shortly before and help unload the students safely.  For the afternoons, the car line opens approximately 2:30 p.m.

Over the next several months, this will be the first winter season in the Johnson Valley, so please be aware of inclement weather conditions that may affect arrival and dismissal traffic patterns.
Fort Thomas is still ranked the safest city in the State.

Other important information

Please remember to lock your doors to your residences, businesses, vehicles, and outbuildings.
Don’t leave valuables in your vehicles.  Remove phones, laptops, tablets, purses, etc.
Report any suspicious activity you see around your neighborhoods and within the city.
Campbell County Dispatch contact:  911 for emergencies or 859-292-3622 for other assistance.

"We are constantly addressing concerns from residents concerning speeding and other traffic infractions," said Lt. Hunt. "There are multiple options to monitor these incidents, from police presence to speed surveys, and digital radar and speed display signs.  Please understand that with each new complaint, it is monitored, and dealt with accordingly and time and manpower allows."

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