In an effort to increase safety for all students, and create awareness of school bus laws in our community, throughout tomorrow, the Eugene Police Traffic Enforcement Unit will be targeting drivers that fail to properly stop for school buses.
Stopping for the flashing red bus lights
When the red lights begin to flash, this means drivers meeting or overtaking the bus from either direction must stop before reaching the bus. You must remain stopped until the bus driver turns off the flashing red lights. The school bus stop law applies on any roadway with two or more lanes of traffic. There is one exception to the law. If you are on a divided highway with two roads separated by an unpaved median strip or barrier, you must stop only if you are on the same side of the road as the bus. A painted median strip or a center lane used only for left turns does not create two separate roads. Where this situation exists, all lanes of traffic must stop. (http://www.nasdpts.org/Operations/documents/State_Laws_Regarding_Passing_School_Buses.pdf)
The following information is from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/812170.pdf)
From 2004 to 2013 there were 340,039 fatal motor vehicle traffic crashes. Of those, 1,214 (0.4%) were classified as school-transportation-related.
From 2004 to 2013, there were 1,344 people killed in school-transportation-related crashes—an average of 134 fatalities per year. Occupants of school transportation vehicles accounted for 8 percent of the fatalities, and nonoccupants (pedestrians, bicyclists, etc.) accounted for 21 percent of the fatalities. Most (71%) of the people who lost their lives in these crashes were occupants of other vehicles involved in the crashes (Table 5).
From 2004 to 2013, there were 116 school-age pedestrians (18 or younger) who died in school-transportation-related crashes. Sixty-two percent were struck by school buses, 5 percent by vehicles functioning as school buses, and 33 percent by other vehicles (passenger cars, light trucks and vans, large trucks, and motorcycles, etc.) involved in the crashes.