BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — “School Zone” speed limits will go back into effect Wednesday as most Kern County students return to campuses.

While those zones are designed to prevent accidents, officials say that doesn’t always happen. With hundreds of young students under his care, road safety is of such concern to Wingland Elementary principal Richard Morosa that he oversees it personally.

“I have seen vehicles coming at a high rate of speed to the front of my school, and to the side and behind it, when children are present,” Morosa said. “That very much concerns me, because it could lead to serious injury or even worse.”

California law requires drivers to slow to 25 miles per hour — or slower if otherwise posted — when driving within 500 to 1,000 feet of a school. Law enforcement says those limits are only as effective as the drivers who follow them.

Last year, the California Highway Patrol responded to a handful of accidents caused by speeding or distracted drivers.

“I can remember one specific one, on Niles St. near Horace Mann (Elementary) School, where a lady in an SUV hit a parent and her child,” CHP public information officer Robert Rodriguez said. “Luckily, no serious injuries, but that just goes to show you — we have to be attentive. A little extra attentive when traveling through the school zones.”

Rodriguez says if you have school-age children, educate them on the importance of using crosswalks and sidewalks safely.