• 61°

Police: Put bus safety concerns in high gear

A bus rider takes a cautious look for traffic while crossing the street at the end of the school day. Law enforcement is reminding drivers to use extra caution and to obey traffic laws when they encounter a school bus which has stopped to load or unload students.

A bus rider takes a cautious look for traffic while crossing the street at the end of the school day. Law enforcement is reminding drivers to use extra caution and to obey traffic laws when they encounter a school bus which has stopped to load or unload students.

With the start of a new school year, police are reminding drivers to use extra caution when they see a stopped school bus — it might just save a life.
Recently, a 7-year-old boy in Johnson City was struck by a vehicle near his bus stop. The Elizabethton Police Department is asking motorists to use care and remember the traffic laws in hopes it will prevent an accident like that from occurring here.
“School buses are an important means of transportation for many students going to and from school each day,” said EPD Capt. Joy Markland. “It is our intention to increase public awareness and knowledge of the laws of the road regarding school bus traffic, as a means to help ensure the safety of the children boarding and exiting the buses.”
Markland provided the following list of guidelines which should be followed by drivers when encountering a stopped or stopping school bus:
• All drivers meeting or following a school bus, from any direction, must stop to allow the loading or unloading of children;
• Drivers may resume travel after the bus begins travel and the visual warning signs and indicators of the bus are no longer activated; and
• Drivers encountering stopped buses from the opposite direction must also stop and observe the same regulations.
The only exceptions are involving vehicles traveling in opposite lanes of travel on a roadway that maintains a physical divider or barrier — such as a concrete or grass median — between opposite lanes of travel. A turn lane doesn’t qualify under that exception, and vehicles traveling in the opposite lanes are still required to stop for buses.