They are three and a half meters high, weigh several hundredweight and have a school mare in their arms: the giant schoolchildren paul and lea and lina respectively. The straw dolls are intended to attract the attention of road users at the beginning of the school year.
Since wednesday "paul" is standing at the elementary school in unnersdorf, from unnersdorf you can see "lea", depending on the clothing chosen.
"Lina" heibt the doll, if one comes from frauendorf; from schwabthal entering the car driver sees "paul" warning to be careful.
For 18 years now, this campaign has been carried out at the ivo hennemann schools. For all these years, the parents of the first-class players have been dressing the figures, with 100s of nails replacing the pins. The school’s distinctive symbol, the school tower, is still the original: made of sheet metal by master carpenter johannes hugerich from loffeld and painted by his wife bettina. In unnersdorf, farmer stefan krick from altenbanz delivers the straw bales, in frauendorf it’s ludwig weis from serkendorf. These abc-schutzen in frauendorf as well as unnersdorf are unmissable. And that is also the sense. They should remind road users that school starts on tuesday and that the first-graders, who have no experience with road traffic, are now on their way here every day.
The two elementary schools are located directly on busy roads, and motorists like to drive up to them with a draft. Speeds of 70 kilometers per hour in schools are not uncommon, as the records with the "temposys" show-automata prove. Warning signs had hardly any effect, daily monitoring of speed was not possible.
"That’s where the idea for the impressive warning figures came from, which are unique in all of bavaria", reports walter mackert, chairman of the local traffic police.
Measurements prove the success: "cars drive up to 20 kilometers per hour slower as soon as the straw dummies are set up in unnersdorf and frauendorf."
After six weeks, the giant schoolchild and his two-meter school mare leave his place again. "Otherwise there will be a habituation effect, and drivers will no longer notice it", woman mackert. The effect lasts for six to eight weeks, then the cars go by faster again. "By then, the first-class children will know their way to school and will have learned a lot about the dangers of road traffic", according to the initiator. Praise for this idea came from school councilor stefanie mayr-leidnecker.
Gerald storath, head of the police station bad staffelstein, announced that with the beginning of the new school year, increased speed checks in the area of the schools are to be expected.
Bad staffelstein’s second mayor hans-josef stich (CSU) wished the new abc-schutzen a successful and accident-free school year.