Calera Fire-Rescue encourages drivers to slow down on first day of school

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CALERA, Okla. -- As kids headed back to school in Calera Thursday morning, the fire department positioned its fire trucks at nearby intersections, encouraging drivers to slow down.

Large banners were draped across the trucks, reminding drivers to be cautious in the school zone.

Fire Chief Brian Norton tells News 12 it's the second year the department has done this. He plans to keep it up for as long as possible.

Norton said he got the idea to put the fire trucks out on the streets when he visited Washington, D.C. a few years ago. He said many of the school districts in that area partnered up with local fire departments to do it.

"And I just thought that was a great idea to raise awareness that now all these little kids are going to be running around, walking up and down the streets, riding their bikes," Norton said. "I'm trying to remind everybody just to slow down and watch out for the kids."

Norton said putting the fire trucks out on the streets has received a lot of positive feedback from parents.

At Calera Elementary School, Principal Steve Evans said he thinks it's a good idea and hopes firefighters will continue to make it an annual event.

"I heard two teachers say they were really glad when they drove in, they seen them out on the corners," Evans said. "And that made them feel better for the safety of their students is that at least the community is helping."

The fire department remained at the busy intersections until the first school bell rang at 8:15.

In addition, the Calera Police Department had three officers patrol the school zone area.