Every day, kids get onboard large vehicles to ride to school—and although many school bus drivers are responsible and the buses are safe, the truth is there are always risks when out on the road. School bus safety is important for kids of all ages, and state of Georgia has a responsibly to ensure it. It’s important to understand the facts about school bus safety in Georgia and the laws surrounding it.
What are the safety issues surrounding school buses?
Although school buses themselves are, in most cases, safe, there are potential issues that can lead to bus accidents. About ten feet out from the sides, front, and back of parked school buses are considered danger zones where accidents commonly occur. This means there are a number of laws for other motorists on the road:
- If someone is driving on either side of a road without a median and sees a school bus stop and flash its red lights, the driver must come to a complete stop without passing the bus. They should also look for students crossing the street as they walk to their homes.
- Drivers should not start driving again until the bus stops flashing its lights or starts driving.
- If someone is driving on a narrower road that has a median and on the same side as the bus, the same rules apply. If the driver is on this road but on the opposite side of the median or on a road with 3-5 lanes, they can keep driving without slowing down.
How does Georgia uphold school bus safety for kids?
- If a school bus driver sees a motorist incorrectly pass a bus and reports them, they can be fined several hundreds of dollars plus increasing fines for additional offenses:
- First offense: $300 fine
- Second offense: $750 fine
- For each subsequent offense (within a 5-year period): $1,000
- The violating driver will also get six points on their driving record per offense.
Several school districts have also placed cameras on their buses to catch drivers who violate the passing laws for buses. In addition, school bus drivers are required to go through regular drug and alcohol testing as well as special medical and security training. These rules are in place to protect school bus passengers and their drivers from getting hit as the bus stops to pick up and drop off children going to and from school. However, accidents can still happen if other drivers are negligent or intoxicated, bus drivers are inattentive, or there are other acts of carelessness like improper maintenance or repair. While we hope this never happens, our lawyers are here with a helping hand if it does.
We have 20+ years working with victims of bus accidents to seek financial recovery they need to move forward and make sure the at-fault party pays for their crime. If your family was affected by a bus accident in Georgia, we’d love to offer you a no-risk, FREE consultation to hear about your situation. Call us today at 404-341-6555 or fill out the form to your right.