As NY bus accident attorneys, it is our responsibility to educate the public about school bus safety and the importance of obeying traffic laws. Every year, Operation Safe Stop Day is observed to raise awareness about the dangers of illegally passing a stopped school bus, and this year’s event is set to take place on April 27th. Unfortunately, accidents like the recent one involving a 9-year-old student in Suffern or the mother and her 4 children who had just gotten out of the school bus and were struck by a hit-and-run driver last November in Brooklyn, remind us that this issue is still prevalent.
The New York Association for Pupil Transportation (NYAPT), along with the New York State Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee, the New York State Education Department, the New York State School Bus Contractors Association, and other organizations, support Operation Safe Stop Day. The main goal is to remind drivers to stop for stopped school buses so that we can keep our school children safe.
According to NYAPT’s surveys, around 50,000 drivers in New York illegally pass stopped school buses every day that school is in session, putting students’ lives at risk
New York State Vehicle and Traffic law requires all vehicles to come to a full stop when approaching a school bus stopped with red lights flashing, indicating that a child is either boarding or disembarking. The law prohibits the passing of a school bus that is stopped with red lights flashing, regardless of the direction of travel, even on a multi-lane or divided highway. Failure to obey the law can result in severe penalties, including fines, points on your license, and even jail time.
In addition to educating drivers about the importance of school bus safety, NYAPT also highlights the efforts made by qualified and well-trained school bus drivers and officials to maintain the highest safety standards. Operation Safe Stop Day public awareness events will take place throughout the state, organized by NYAPT chapters and local organizations.
It’s essential to remember that school bus transportation is one of the safest ways for students to travel to and from school. However, accidents like the one involving the 9-year-old student in Suffern or the mother and her four children in Brooklyn, highlight the importance of obeying traffic laws and being vigilant when driving near school buses. As bus accident attorneys, we urge drivers to slow down, avoid distractions, and always stop when they see those red lights flashing on a school bus. Our children’s safety depends on all drivers following the law.