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NYS Targets Drivers Who Pass Stopped School Buses

sbf.gifBeginning Thursday, law enforcement agencies across the region will begin participating in Operation Safe Stop – cracking down on motorists who illegally pass school buses as students are getting on or off the vehicles.

Transportation officials, law enforcement agencies and the governor’s Traffic Safety Committee are teaming up Thursday to conduct “Operation Safe Stop” across New York.

Officials say that motorists pass stopped school buses at least 50,000 times each day in the state, putting children at risk.

Operation Safe Stop is aimed at reminding motorists that state law requires them to stop for a school bus that is stopped and has its red flashing lights flashing.

Police will be looking to enforce New York State vehicle and traffic law violations including passing stopped school buses, but may also include other violations which may help reduce aggressive driving behavior.

Police say the fine for passing a stopped school bus can range from $250 to $400 as well as five points on your license.

Three school districts – Bethlehm, Brewster and Canandaigua – are getting special license plate reading equipment that will be placed on buses to help apprehend drivers who pass school buses illegally.

(Source: Newsday / News10)

11 Responses

  1. it’s about time!! i hope they are targeting the drivers in brooklyn also – i have witnessed too many times too many close calls of cars passing the red flashing light.

  2. we hope that they will protect our children from the unsafe bus driver who have total disrespect for the driving laws.

  3. i am a bus driver in lakewood and this is the sickest thing poeple do, one time during my morning run i saw a mother pull back he child on to the side walk so the car passing the red lights (5 points) on my right (4 points)should not hit her. i do about 4 runs a day, i have about one by passer per run. i know in new york its mutch wors but i hope the lakewood pd also tags along with this. ( i hope people read this and drive safly, noboy wants any fines or any other “agmas nefesh”

  4. I must note that this whole idea of school buses with red lights that cars have to stop for is unheard of outside America.

    There is no such thing in Israel or anywhere in Europe.

    Perhaps it would be better to simply abandon that system entirely, since it often provides only a false sense of safety. Without it, children would have to cross the road on their own (well, with adults) and rely on their own eyes to look at traffic, instead of running across the street without looking.

  5. Daniel Breslauer is Israel where they have a lot of fatel accidents. I wonder what the numbers are on kids getting off of school buses. It is rediculous to not allow a car four lanes over from passing a school bus.

  6. About 15 years ago I got a ticket in Manhattan for passing a school bus pulled over to the curb at a school and discharging children, with its lights flashing, at morning rush hour. There was an empty lane between the bus and me, it was rush hour, there were a bunch of cars honking at me when I stopped, my passenger told me I was tying up traffic all over the city, and I finally proceeded at about 1 mph. There was a policeman hiding in front of the bus who gave me a ticket. The next day I read in the NYT that the police had enforced the rule for one day, and were not going to continue.

    If they are going to enforce it vigorously, they will have to figure out what to do about keeping traffic flowing at morning rush hour.

  7. The bus drivers must take some responsibility for this mess. I have often seen buses parked in front of schools with the lights flashing. The children are getting on or off the bus directly in to the school. No crossing kids.
    Also, a bus waits a minute or two or more (usually during peak times) with the lights flashing, for a tardy child.

    If bus drivers would be more respectful and thoughtful of us, the driving public; and only open the doors when necessary, than I am quite sure that the ‘passing’ problem will improve considerably.

    And while on the subject of school bus drivers, may I just mention the problem of school buses not stopping at STOP signs; flying through yellow (and red) lights. (Many of our Russian brothers and their car serveeces and also guilty of this).

  8. #4
    As one who lived in Israel the majority of school age children over 80% walk to and fro school. The abundant of buses transport middle-school students and up. My children used the regular Egged buses to get to school so the comparison is quite off base.
    “they will protect our children from the unsafe bus driver who have total disrespect for the driving laws”—if you feel the drivers are unsafe speak to the schools or company that hires them has nothing to do with the transportation officials..

  9. 4, I think you’re going to be a voice in the wilderness. I think that the red lights is one of the great signs of setting up the type of dinnim Hashem had in mind re the sheva mitzvos. A fine sign of a civilized society.

  10. #2 and #8 have a good point. people should stop for buses when children are going on or off but it is also important that the buses practice safe driving! There are some school bus drivers that really need to learn safe driving rules!

  11. And ho about bus drivers who drive our kids while talking on the cell phone. They should lose their licenses.
    As for the red light law, it is my understanding that the driver may wave on traffic. If children are loading or disembarking a bus and it’s at the curb, why can’t drivers be waved on especially if it’s an avenue or a two way street? If the drivers were more in tuned to vehicular traffic, perhaps there would be fewer people passing their busses. It requires effort of us all to really work and it can be done in a pleasant way. Bus drivers should not have their RED lights on unless kids are mammish getting on and off!

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