Drivers reminded of ‘Rules of Road’ to keep children safe at bus stops
There have been several accidents at school bus stops in the national news lately, a good reminder for us in Delaware to make sure drivers are aware of the rules of the road. School buses are one of the safest forms of transportation on the road, and Delaware drivers can help ensure the safety of our students by paying special attention to school buses. Most of the children who lose their lives in bus-related crashes are pedestrians, many hit by motorists illegally passing stopped buses. In the spring, Delaware public school bus drivers conducted their eighth annual survey of vehicles illegally passing their buses while they were loading/unloading students with their overhead red lights flashing and lighted STOP arms extended. The survey, conducted on May 4, 2018, included 1,108 bus drivers who reported 572 illegal passes, 8 of which were by the right side of the bus. Almost 300 of the illegal passes (296) were drivers approaching from the rear of the bus. More than half of the illegal passes (294) occurred on the morning bus runs.
The Delaware Department of Education – in partnership with the Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security Highway Safety Office, Delaware Department of Transportation and Delaware State Police – reminds vehicle operators of the state’s “Rules of the Road” to keep our children safe when they are getting on or off a school bus: – Bus drivers will turn on the overhead amber flashing lights to give motorists advance notice that they are preparing to stop to pick up or discharge students. – Once stopped, the bus drivers activate the overhead red flashing lights and extend their bus STOP arms. – When a bus is stopped on a two-lane road with the overhead red flashing lights illuminated and STOP arm out, the driver of any vehicle approaching the school bus from the front or the rear of the bus shall stop and remain stopped until the red lights are no longer flashing and the STOP arm is retracted. – On a roadway with four or more lanes, the driver approaching the bus from the front shall not stop. – Drivers should stop far enough from the bus to allow students to safely enter and exit the bus. – Be alert. Children can be unpredictable.