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School Bus Safety Rules For Drivers

Schools in and around Colorado Springs have begun the 2020/2021 academic year in recent days.  We are taking this opportunity to remind our friends and neighbors of school bus and school zone safety rules to help keep our Colorado Springs kids safe.  

How long has it been since you took the Drivers’ Education written test which required you to identify the meaning of school bus signals?  Here’s a refresher:

YELLOW FLASHING LIGHTSThe bus is preparing to stop to load or unload children.  Motorists should slow and prepare to stop.
RED FLASHING LIGHTS & EXTENDED STOP ARMSThe bus has stopped to load or unload children.  Motorists must stop and wait until the bus resumes its trip before they can resume theirs.

Did you know?

  • It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus on any undivided highway or road in either direction if the buss is stopped to un/load children.
  • The problem is real: a study in 1996 gathered data from Virginia bus drivers in a single day: drivers reported over 3,000 motorists illegally passed a school bus in this short period.
  • In a 1997 survey on unsafe driving behaviors, 99% of respondents felt that the most dangerous driving behavior was passing a school bus with lights flashing and stop-arm extended.[1]
  • Selective Traffic Enforcement Programs are particularly effective in combatting these problems.  Such programs begin with raising public awareness and then increased enforcement of these laws.  Colorado has utilized similar methods to curb the problem of motorists not slowing and moving away from emergency vehicles stopped on the roadside. 

Note: If your child is injured in an incident involving a school bus, short notice periods may apply for purposes of filing an injury claim and prompt legal consultation is advised. 

[1] https://www.nhtsa.gov/school-bus-safety/reducing-illegal-passing-school-buses