As a Georgia driver, do you know your duty as a driver of a vehicle that is meeting or overtaking a school bus?
Besides creating a dangerous situation and possibly injuring or killing innocent children, you could receive a citation, be fined up to $1,000.00, have 6 points placed on your driver’s license record, and risk having your license suspended if you are under 21 years of age.
Do you know the law for passing a school bus?
Follow this link to find out how Operation Stop Arm has been educating drivers to exercise caution when school buses are stopped and loading or unloading children. This pamphlet gives a great description of the law for passing a school bus based on the different types of roads being traveled. Under state law, drivers in all lanes must stop including drivers that are on multi-lane highways with a center turn lane. The only exception is if a driver is on the other side of a median that has a physical barrier such as grass or a concrete barricade.
At one time, school bus drivers were responsible for getting the violators tag number and information in order to report the violation. As of July 1, 2011, Georgia law allows the use of cameras mounted on school buses to keep record of violators. Approximately two dozen school systems in Georgia have added school bus cameras to their safety program.
Cobb County School System has equipped 122 of their school buses with digital video cameras that can capture tag information of drivers that fail to stop when school buses are loading or unloading children. This particular school system estimates that approximately 1,000 violations occur per day.
The National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services produced a 2015 survey estimating that 78,518 vehicles pass school buses illegally on any given day in 26 states including Georgia, which was reported to have 8,790 incidents of illegal passing observed April 22. Click here to see the 2015 Survey on Illegal Passing of School Buses. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”), 21 children under the age of 19 die every year as pedestrians getting on and off buses.