August means back to school time for our kiddos. This is a good time to remind everyone what to do when you see a school bus in North Carolina. The laws around school buses are designed to keep children safe. The law depends on the type of road you are traveling on.
We have a great info graph to help illustrate the various scenarios taken from the North Carlina Department of Public Safety. You can read the full article here. In each of the scenarios, as soon as you see the flashing lights you must begin to slow down to stop in anticipation of the school bus driver putting out the actual stop sign. You must remain stopped until the driver turns off the lights AND removes the stop sign indicating all of the children are in a safe place.
Around schools there are school zones with flashing yellow lights to advise you when the speed limit in these zones has changed. It is very important that you are extra diligent in paying attention to these flashing yellow lights and you modify your speed as indicated. Children are in the process of coming to or from the building and the speed reduction is to make you alert and aware.
If you receive a ticket for passing a school bus or for speeding in a designated school zone it is a very expensive mistake. Not only do you have to pay the fine, but you will see an increase in your insurance premium for 3 years. The financial setback pales in comparison to hurting a child. The laws are designed to keep children safe. It is your job as a driver to be alert and watching your surroundings to ensure you are following the law and working to keep the kids safe.