FIRE chiefs have put out a plea to parents ahead of the big return to school – pay attention and make sure children stay safe during the school run.

In a Facebook message aimed both at school run drivers and parents who will be walking their children to school, North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue warns that the school run can be ‘hectic’.

"This time next week many children will be heading back to school," the post says.

"We hope they have all had a great summer break and are looking forward to being back with their friends.

"(However) the school run can be an extremely hectic time for many.

"This can sometimes mean we do things we wouldn’t normally do - such as park our cars on road markings or park inappropriately in other ways, cross roads where we know we shouldn’t, use mobile phones."

It says parents should always plan the ‘safest route to school’ for their children.

“If you are walking, think about where you will cross the road and make use of designated crossings, and leave plenty of time to arrive safely,” it says.

Those driving their children to school, meanwhile, should be considerate of other children and parents who may be using the roads near school, it says.

“Think about where you will park your car, and have a plan B - don’t be tempted to leave your car anywhere it could be a potential hazard, even for five minutes,” the post says.

“And NEVER use your mobile phone when driving.

“Children going to school are often excited about their day ahead and not always paying much attention to cars and their dangers.

“Please do this for them and keep them safe.”