Monday, March 30, 2015

Did You Know? ... School Bus Safety

Dufferin County, ON (OPP - Dufferin Detachment) Although we have become accustomed to seeing buses circulating in the County of Dufferin since last fall, drivers can become distracted and complacent. It is important to take extra precautionary measures when sharing the road with a school bus. Please be mindful of school bus safety always.


It is dangerous to pass a school bus that has its upper red lights flashing and has stopped to let children on or off. It is also against the law – unless you are coming from the other direction on a road with a median. Make sure you know the rules and help keep our school children safe.

Drivers: Know the Rules

When driving on a road WITHOUT a median

  • Drivers travelling in both directions must stop for a stopped school bus with its upper red lights flashing
  • When you approach the bus from the front, stop at a safe distance to let children get on or off the school bus and cross the road
  • Don’t move forward until the red lights have stopped flashing or the bus begins to move.

When driving on a road WITH a median

  • Traffic coming from the opposite direction is not required to stop.

FINES;

Drivers can be charged if they pass a stopped school bus with its upper red lights flashing:

First offence: $400 to $2000 and 6 demerit points.
Second offence: $1000 to $4000, 6 demerit points and possible jail time (up to 6 months).

Vehicle owners can be charged if their vehicle illegally passes a stopped school bus, even if they weren’t driving.



Report drivers that don’t stop

You can report a vehicle that doesn’t stop properly for a school bus to police immediately by calling 911.

  • Record the date and time of the incident.
  • The vehicle’s make, model, colour and licence number
  • Who was driving?
  • Was the bus a “chrome yellow” school bus with the words “School Bus” at the front and rear of the bus?
  • Was it a small or large school bus?
  • Was the school bus stopped?
  • Were the upper red lights of the school bus flashing while it was stopped?
  • Were the passengers boarding or leaving the school bus?
  • Did the vehicle pass the school bus from behind or was it coming toward the bus in the opposite lane?

The Dufferin Detachment continues to work closely with school bus operators and their drivers to ensure the safety of the ridership.

For more information, refer to Ministry of Transportation website www.mto.gov.on.ca