Drivers cautioned as school begins

school sign

Many Valley students will be heading back to school Monday and local and state police agencies are urging motorists to be on the lookout for buses and students walking to school.

Under state school bus stopping law in Ohio and Pennsylvania, motorists approaching a bus with its red lights flashing and stop arm extended are required to stop in all directions at least 10 feet from the bus. The only exception is when a bus is parked on the opposite side of a highway clearly separated by a divider.

“As students return to the classroom, drivers who haven’t had to drive around buses or students for months must be alert for bus stops and school zones,” said PennDOT Secretary Barry Schoch. “The consequences of just a moment of distraction could prove tragic.”

In Ohio, from 2010 through 2012, 4,176 motorists were cited for failing to stop for a school bus when it was loading or unloading children. Fines for violating school bus stopping laws begin at $250 and three points on a motorist’s driving record.

 

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