Children at Play
The City of Rocklin often receives requests to install "Children at Play" signs.
City Policy on "Children at Play" Signs
“Children at Play” and similar signs are not recognized by the State or the Federal Highway Administration as official traffic control devices and are not installed by the City on public streets.
These signs are deceiving and ineffective. Drivers already expect the presence of children in residential areas, especially at certain times. Studies show that these signs don't increase safety.
False Sense of Security
“Children at Play” signs tend to create a false sense of security for parents and children who believe the signs provide an added degree of protection when motorists, particularly local ones, actually pay little attention to them. The use of “Children at Play” and similar signs such as “Slow” or “Slow - Entering Residential Area” have long been discouraged since these signs are a direct and open suggestion to small children that playing in or beside the roadway is acceptable. Parents also seem to believe such signs may help reduce speeds. There is no evidence that these signs prevent accidents or reduce the speed of vehicles. If problems with speeding exist, stricter enforcement should be sought from the appropriate law enforcement authorities.
Lower Speed Limits
Citizens frequently request 10 mph speed limit signs on residential streets where children are playing. The un-posted speed limit on a residential street is automatically 25 mph and can be enforced. The City cannot post 10 mph speed limits because the posting of such signs by a local government agency is considered a speed trap and therefore makes enforcement of such limits illegal.
Prohibiting Trucks in Residential Areas
Citizens also frequently request signs that restrict commercial vehicles on residential streets. Even when these signs are posted, the following commercial vehicles can still use the streets:
- Emergency vehicles
- Buses & other passenger vehicles
- Building construction or delivery vehicles
- Local pick-up or delivery vehicles
- Vehicles used by local businesses to gain access to and from the business
Addressing the Safety of Young Children
Unnecessary signs confuse and annoy drivers and fosters a disrespect for all signs, but signs in accordance with the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) can and should be posted for school zones and pedestrian crossings, as well as playgrounds and other recreational areas, where a need exists.
Most importantly, parents should teach children the dangers of playing in or near roadways and strongly discourage them from doing so. The City provides neighborhood parks where children can play safely with proper supervision. Safe playgrounds are also provided at many elementary school sites.
The City takes our role in solving traffic problems very seriously, yet the ultimate burden of safety rests with the citizens in Rocklin. Since we receive numerous requests per year, we cannot always investigate your request as quickly as we would like to. However, we will respond after carefully evaluating your request. We appreciate your patience and understanding.
Questions? If you have questions, requests or suggestions concerning traffic contact Public Services at 916.625.5500 or by email at Access Rocklin.