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School bus stop laws are laws dictating what a motorist must do in the vicinity of a bus stop being used by a school bus or other bus, coach or minibus providing school transport.
Jurisdictions in the United States (including overseas territories) and Canada have adopted various school bus stop laws that require drivers to stop and wait for a stopped school bus loading or unloading, so as to protect school children boarding or alighting.
Generally, if a stopped school bus is displaying a flashing, alternating red lamp, a driver of a vehicle meeting or overtaking the stopped bus from either direction (front or back) must stop and wait until the bus moves again or the red light is off.Police officers, school crossing guards, and even school bus drivers themselves may have the power to wave traffic on, even when a red light is flashing.
On divided highways, most American and Canadian jurisdictions do not require vehicular drivers to stop when on the opposite side of the road from a stopped school bus. Those that do require vehicles to stop are:
American and Canadian jurisdictions have sought to deter illegal passing stopped school buses by increased enforcement and heavy penalties, including fines, application of demerit points against a driver's license or even license suspension. Nevertheless, violations are common. An officer must witness the violation, and even when citations issued, getting convictions is often difficult;sometimes traffic courts consider the evidence insufficient, or reduce the charge because the penalty for a first offense seems excessive. There are, however, exceptions. Missouri has Jessica's Law, which grants the right of a school bus driver to report the offense, in which case the driver is automatically cited. Cobb County, an urban county in Metro Atlanta, has added bus cameras, as a deterrent, which can detect and automatically report vehicles passing a bus.
Drivers in Washington state are not required to stop for a school bus on any highway (Under Washington law, any public road is defined as a highway) with three or more lanes when traveling in the opposite direction.This has been interpreted to mean that when approaching a bus from the opposite direction on a normal road with a turn lane, or a road with two lanes in each direction, etc., a driver is not required to stop their vehicle. This is an unusual law, but arguably leads to a higher safety level for children, as they are then required to be picked up or dropped on the same side of the road as the bus exit on anything greater than a two-lane road as provided by RCW 46.61.370. Ohio has a similar exception for roads with four or more lanes.
Drivers in Idahoand Kentucky are not required to stop for a school bus on any highway with four or more lanes when traveling in the opposite direction.
Drivers in California do not have to stop on any highway that is divided or is multi-lane (2 or more lanes of travel in each direction) when traveling in the opposite direction.
In Pennsylvania, the only vehicle that may pass a stopped school bus with the red lights flashing is an emergency vehicle with its flashing lights and siren activated, but only after the emergency vehicle has come to a complete stop and proceeds with due caution for any students embarking or disembarking.
In New York State, an official estimate is that 50,000 vehicles pass stopped school buses illegally every day.However, as New York State requires traffic to stop for a school bus stopped on the opposing roadway of a divided highway, the estimate may include "New York violations" that would be legal in other states. The New York State Department of Transportation once recommended that the State Legislature exempt traffic from stopping for a school bus stopped on the opposing roadway of a divided highway, but this has not been done.
On a national basis, school bus drivers in the United States have reported a decrease in passing violators in recent years with improved warning devices. Despite an increase in traffic and school bus ridership, annual fatalities and injuries to children struck by other vehicles has decreased as well. However, it is unclear whether having reported a decrease in passing violators is due to difficulty to report or better compliance by motorists.[ citation needed ]
When and where enforcement against violators becomes too hard, some residential streets may prohibit entry of vehicles other than school buses at certain times to effectively eliminate passing stopped school buses illegally.[ citation needed ]
Bus drivers are prohibited to turn around at intersections with students on the bus. If laws are broken, the bus driver may be charged with including but not limited to: child endangerment and disobeying laws. This section may not include all laws or bylaws.[ citation needed ]
Traffic laws in other countries do not require vehicles to stop.
The speed limit is 40 km/h (24.9 mph) in Australia and 20 km/h (12.4 mph) in New Zealand when passing a stopped school bus. In New Zealand, the New Zealand Transport Agency decided that the speed limit passing a stopped school bus should not be raised based on probabilities of pedestrian deaths if hit at different speeds, nor has it supported requiring fully stopping and waiting for school buses loading and unloading children as in the United States and Canada.
In Belgium and Germany, traffic is required to pass stopped school buses at very slow speeds that allow for quick stopping. While in South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the United Kingdom, drivers are directed to drive carefully past stopped school buses.
Traffic on roads consists of road users including pedestrians, ridden or herded animals, vehicles, streetcars, buses and other conveyances, either singly or together, while using the public way for purposes of travel.
Traffic lights, traffic signals, stoplights or robots are signalling devices positioned at road intersections, pedestrian crossings, and other locations to control flows of traffic.
In road transport, a lane is part of a carriageway that is designated to be used by a single line of vehicles to control and guide drivers and reduce traffic conflicts. Most public roads (highways) have at least two lanes, one for traffic in each direction, separated by lane markings. On multilane roadways and busier two-lane roads, lanes are designated with road surface markings. Major highways often have two multi-lane roadways separated by a median.
A U-turn in driving refers to performing a 180° rotation to reverse the direction of travel. It is called a "U-turn" because the maneuver looks like the letter U. In some areas, the maneuver is illegal, while in others, it is treated as a more ordinary turn, merely extended. In still other areas, lanes are occasionally marked "U-turn permitted" or even "U-turn only."
A single-track road or one-lane road is a road that permits two-way travel but is not wide enough in most places to allow vehicles to pass one another. This kind of road is common in rural areas across the United Kingdom and elsewhere. To accommodate two-way traffic, many single-track roads, especially those officially designated as such, are provided with passing places or pullouts or turnouts, or simply wide spots in the road, which may be scarcely longer than a typical car using the road. The distance between passing places varies considerably, depending on the terrain and the volume of traffic on the road. The railway analog for passing places are passing loops.
A passing lane or overtaking lane is a lane on a multi-lane highway or motorway closest to the median of the road. In some countries, lanes are described as being on the 'inside' or the 'outside' of a road, and the location of the passing lanes will vary.
Bicycle law in California is the parts of the California Vehicle Code that set out the law for persons cycling in California, and a subset of bicycle law in the United States. In general, pretty much all the same rights and responsibilities that apply to car drivers apply to bicycle riders as well.
Road surface marking is any kind of device or material that is used on a road surface in order to convey official information; they are commonly placed with road marking machines. They can also be applied in other facilities used by vehicles to mark parking spaces or designate areas for other uses.
Overtaking or passing is the act of one vehicle going past another slower moving vehicle, travelling in the same direction, on a road. The lane used for overtaking another vehicle is almost always a passing lane further from the road shoulder which is to the left in places that drive on the right and to the right in places that drive on the left.
For driving in the United States, each state has its own traffic code or rules of the road, although most of the rules of the road are similar for the purpose of uniformity, given that all states grant reciprocal driving privileges to each other's licensed drivers. There is also a "Uniform Vehicle Code" which has been proposed by a private, non-profit group, based upon input by its members. As with uniform acts in general, some states adopt selected portions as written, or else with modifications, and others create their own versions. Similarly, most states have adopted relevant standards for signs and signals, based upon the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices from the U.S. Department of Transportation. Many of the standard rules of the road involve consistent interpretation of the standard signs and signals, such as what to do when approaching a stop sign, or the driving requirements imposed by a double yellow line on the street or highway. Many federal departments have also adopted their own traffic code for enforcement on their respective reservations.
Road signs in Singapore closely follow those laid down in the traffic sign regulations used in the United Kingdom, although a number of changes over the years have introduced some slight deviations that suit local road conditions. Road signs in Singapore conform to the local Highway Code under the authority of the Singapore Traffic Police.
A single carriageway or undivided highway is a road with one, two or more lanes arranged within a single carriageway with no central reservation to separate opposing flows of traffic.
Road signs in Norway are regulated by the Norwegian Public Roads Administration, Statens vegvesen.
Driving in the United Kingdom is governed by various legal powers and in some cases is subject to the passing of a driving test. The government produces a Highway Code that details the requirements for all road users, including drivers. Unlike most other countries in the world, UK traffic drives on the left.
A move over law is a law which requires motorists to move over and change lanes to give safe clearance to law enforcement officers, firefighters, ambulances, utility workers, and in some cases, tow-truck drivers and disabled vehicles. In the past, Canada and United States have used this term to apply to two different concepts; however, this is beginning to change as Canadian provinces have begun expanding the scope of their move over laws.
In the United States, road signs are, for the most part, standardized by federal regulations, most notably in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) and its companion volume the Standard Highway Signs (SHS).
Headlight flashing is the act of either briefly switching on the headlights of a car, or of momentarily switching between a headlight's high beams and low beams, in an effort to communicate with another driver or drivers. The signal is sometimes referred to in car manufacturers' manuals as an optical horn, since it draws the attention of other drivers.
Terminology related to road transport—the transport of passengers or goods on paved routes between places—is diverse, with variation between dialects of English. There may also be regional differences within a single country, and some terms differ based on the side of the road traffic drives on. This glossary is an alphabetical listing of road transport terms.
Yellow lines are road markings used in various territories.
Road signs in the Philippines are regulated and standardized by the Department of Public Works and Highways. Most of the signs reflects minor influences from American and Australian signage, but keeps close to the Vienna Convention as an original signatory.
Drivers are not required to stop if the school bus is approaching along an opposite lane of travel separated by a median twenty feet or more in width
when you see a school bus with alternating flashing red lights at the top, you must stop whether you are approaching it from the front or the rear. Vehicles in all lanes must stop.