Why You Have to Stop for a School Bus

Why You Have to Stop for a School Bus

It is a common site for motorists in New York, a school bus is offloading passengers and signaling for all traffic to stop. When a school bus flashes red signal lights, all lanes of traffic on both sides of a roadway must come to a complete stop, even if the opposing lines of traffic are divided. Drivers may not proceed again until each passenger has cleared the area and the bus driver turns off signal lights and indicates that traffic can proceed. This is the law and it applies to all New York roadways, school parking lots, and anywhere else a school bus may stop. According to data reported by the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation, many bus drivers have reported multiple infractions per day.

The principle reason that you must follow a bus driver’s instruction to stop is to ensure the safety of any child and adult passengers. Drivers who approach a bus from the front may think that because they are on the opposite side of traffic or have a better view of the bus loading zone that this traffic law does not apply to them. However, breaking this law greatly increases the risk of pedestrian accidents. According to the New York Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), the majority of school bus related accidents occur when children exit the bus and are crossing the road, not during collisions with other vehicles, as many might think.

Drivers must stop at least 20 feet away from the bus and passengers. Keeping in line with the patterns of a traffic light, the school bus lights may flash yellow before turning red as a cautionary measure to alert drivers to prepare to stop. A motorist who violates this law can be punished by fines of at least $250. Drivers who have multiple infractions in one year can be hit with fines of up to $1000. If drivers are convicted of more than 3 violations in a short period of time, they may have their license revoked for a period of at least 6 months.

Received a Traffic Ticket in NYC? Call (877) 803-2603

The truth is that many situations are rarely black and white and if you have been stopped for a traffic violation, you must fight to ensure that you are treated fairly. Whether you have received a citation for passing a school bus or have been charged with driving under the influence, our New York City traffic ticket attorneys can help. At Gannes & Musico, we have defended the rights of New Yorkers in thousands of traffic violation cases and can provide insight at every step of the legal process. If you have questions about how we can help you beat your ticket, do not hesitate to contact our firm.

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