Almost all of us have ridden on a school bus when we were kids. We know what it's like to be excited to get to school and even more excited to get home. We used to bound off the bus and run straight for our mom's waiting arms, or continue on our way down the street towards snacks, TV, and comfort.
Few of us were really paying attention to the dangers of getting off the bus, because, after all, the bus kept us safe.
All school buses in North America come equipped with flashing stop signs that all motorists are supposed to observe. After all the "Stop" sign isn't exactly hard to understand. Even so, millions of cars dangerously zoom by stopping school buses every day. Annually, almost 200 people are killed in school vehicle related accidents, too many of them children getting off a school bus.
Lately there's been a lot of attention on this type of traffic violation. A woman in Florida recorded numerous vehicles breaking the law by speeding past a bus. She posted the video to Facebook where it went viral.
9am..... on US Highway 19 in front of Gulf View Square Mall... come on you all me to stop for these children to get on their bus or get off it takes just a few seconds out of your busy ass day to make sure everyone around you is safe pay attentionPosted by Monica Douglas on Friday, October 12, 2018
The Pasco County Sheriff's office confirmed that 13 people were cited in response to the video.
Another video that got a lot of attention showed a bus driver taking matters into his own hands. John R Roleau shared a video showing a bus deliberately steering into opposing traffic. You can see a young child cross the busy street and get on to the bus.
With all the school bus accidents recently, I'd like to thank my bus driver and school district with coming up with a safe and common sense solution to minimize the danger of my children getting on the bus. This is not fail proof, however you may notice a large yellow vehicle parked across your lane better than a flashing stop sign. PLEASE be cautious and patient when you see a school bus, these are kids?? No meeting, reservation or class is worth ruining lives forever....Posted by John R. Roleau on Friday, November 2, 2018
Some governments have taken notice. The province of Prince Edward Island in Canada will revoke the licenses of drivers that fail to stop for school buses. Offenders will lose the license for three months and could face a fine of up to $5,000.
To get the license back drivers would have to pay a fee, apply to a transit authority and possible take a defensive driving course. The law was passed in response to a number of instances of children being struck by vehicles.
[H/T: NBC News]
I don't think we can ever go too far in protecting our children, and I hope we see more laws like this one.