October 16-20 is School Bus Safety (Awareness) Month!
School days bring congestion: Yellow school buses are picking up their charges, kids on bikes are hurrying to get to school before the bell rings, harried parents are trying to drop their kids off before work.
It’s never more important for drivers to slow down and pay attention than when kids are present – especially before and after school.
If you’re driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It will give you more time to stop once the yellow lights start flashing. It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children.
Never pass a bus from behind – or from either direction if you’re on an undivided road – if it is stopped to load or unload children.
If the yellow or red lights are flashing and the stop arm is extended, traffic must stop.
The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus.
Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks.