Drivers Ignoring School Bus Stopping Law, Police Say

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Two motorists who allegedly ignored the state’s school bus stopping law will receive citations that could result in hefty fines and as well as the automatic suspension of their driving privileges for 60 days, Lower Saucon Township Police said Thursday.

Police shared in the information in the context of a public service announcement about the law, which requires vehicles in all directions to stop for illuminated red lights on school buses.

Under the state law, the following requirements exist:

  • Motorists must stop at least 10 feet away from school buses that have their red lights flashing and stop arm extended.
  • Motorists must stop when they are behind a bus, meeting the bus or approaching an intersection where a bus is stopped.
  • Motorists following or traveling alongside a school bus must stop until the red lights have stopped flashing, the stop arm is withdrawn and all children have reached safety.
  • If physical barriers such as grassy medians, guide rails or concrete median barriers separate oncoming traffic from the bus, motorists in the opposing lanes may proceed without stopping.
  • Motorists may not proceed until all children who have exited the school bus have reached places of safety.

If convicted of violating the school bus stopping law, a motorist will receive a $250 fine and five points on their driving license in addition to the 60-day license suspension.

Under a Crimewatch post titled “STOP, STOP, STOP–If You See Red Flashing Lights on a School Bus,” township police noted that “our department has investigated two reports of vehicles failing to stop for illuminated red lights on Saucon Valley school buses” in recent days.

“In the first incident a vehicle traveling in the opposing lane just continued traveling past the bus while it was stopped with the red lights illuminated,” police said. “The second incident the vehicle actually passed the bus on the left while it was stopped with the red lights illuminated.”

For more information about Pennsylvania’s school bus stopping law, visit PennDOT’s school bus safety page.

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