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Do I HAVE to Stop for School Buses?

Are Vehicles Required to Stop When A School Bus Puts Out the Stop Sign?

Article By: Ms. Achsha

I see it nearly every day that school is in session; a school bus is stopped in the far right lane of the street with its' stop sign sticking out and the red overhead, alternating lights going and cars continue to zip by as if the bus weren't even there.

I'm sure if more people knew the law and why it existed, they would follow it. Hopefully, this article will help. The answer is yes; you are required by law to stop for a school bus that has its' stop sign extended and the overhead lights on in the same way that you would for a flashing red or stop sign.

There is a difference though; you have to wait until the stop sign has been retracted before you can continue. This goes for both sides of the street.

The reason for this law is child safety; kids are either exiting or entering the bus when the "stop sticks" are out. Children have been struck by vehicles racing to the bus in the wee hours of the morning. Other, more unfortunate incidents involve driver error where the stop sign wasn't activated but more often than not, its drivers who ignore the stop sign.

Because a school bus is a moving intersection, there are rules associated with when and how a driver can activate their stop sticks. These rules vary from state to state.

Your best bet is to be cautious when traveling near school buses and to yield by default. Think what you would want someone to do if your kid or loved one were on the bus.

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