Thursday, September 30, 2010

School Buses with Red Flashing Lights

It always amazes me that most of the general population of California does not know what to do when they encounter a school bus stopped on the road with their red lights flashing. STOP for crying out loud and stay stopped until the bus driver turns off the red lights. It would also be nice and courteous if you would let me pull back into traffic.

Most of our newer buses have an eight light system at the top of our bus. That means that we have two amber warning lights and two red warning lights mounted on the front and back of our bus. It also says in 8 inch letters on the back of the bus, STOP WHEN RED LIGHTS ARE FLASHING. With our eight light system we are supposed to activate our amber warning lights 200 feet before our stop and then as soon as we stop, activate our red lights. Some people actually take our amber light system to mean, GO AS FAST AS I CAN AROUND THIS BUS!

This afternoon some people got educated the hard way. I have two stops on a certain road in Vacaville that is very heavily traveled. They are actually about 200 feet apart. When I stop for the first one as soon as I have unloaded that student, I turn off my red lights and pull into traffic and immediately activate my amber light system again. When I get to the second stop I immediately turn on my red lights. This afternoon I did that very thing and as my student was getting off the bus, I glanced in my left mirror just in time to see the second car behind me, plow into the car directly behind me. Thank heavens the person behind me was following the law and had stopped with some distance between us and he didn't hit me. I called in to base to see if I had to stay there and was informed that if I was not hit , I was not involved and  to move on. I gave all the information to the dispatcher so if the Vacaville PD called they would know what happened. I felt so bad for the driver that was hit because they were following the law and didn't do anything wrong.

By the way, when you run my red lights, the first offence is $250.00. If you run my red lights multiple times you could be looking at a $1000.00 fine. So think about it and make the safety of the children I drive your priority. You may save a few minutes by running my red lights or you could get someone killed.

1 comment:

Karen said...

What a dummy! Bummer for the rule follower! Glad they didn't hit you!