With schools set to open up for the year in the coming days, police departments in Fairfield County are cautioning motorists to be safe around school buses, or else they may face a hefty fine.
“School buses will be hitting the roads again, and we urge you to drive with caution and never drive distracted,” police said, noting that violations will be “strictly enforced” and carry penalties that include fines of no less than $465.
According to AAA, every day, about 500,000 school buses transport more than 23 million students to and from school. However, each year, nationally, about 24 school-aged children are killed in school transportation-related traffic crashes.
Through hands-on presentations and videos, Traffic Safety Community Educators from the Mid-Atlantic Foundation for Safety and Education are out in the community teaching the importance of School Bus Safety.
To keep students safe, AAA has offered tips for motorists as schools get set to begin the academic year:
- Watch for children walking to and from the bus stop as well as standing at the bus stop;
- Yellow flashing lights on a school bus mean that a bus is preparing to stop. Do not try to pass the bus! Begin slowing and prepare to stop your vehicle;
- Red flashing lights indicate that a bus has stopped to load or unload children. Stop your car and wait for the bus lights to stop flashing before moving your vehicle. Passing a loading or unloading school bus is reckless driving and;
- Oncoming vehicles, separated by a physical barrier in the road, do not have to stop for buses.
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