Bus Safety

Whenever the red, alternate flashing lights (near the top of the bus) are illuminated all traffic must stop in both directions, as students are loading or unloading and may be crossing the road. Policy is that bus drivers will escort all students across the road at “red light crossings”. Please be exceedingly aware of school buses that are stopped. Students that are getting off the bus at their stop must be extra cautious to exit the bus and walk away from it as quickly as possible. Please instruct your child that if he or she drops papers or books, to walk away far from the bus and get the driver’s attention. Never go under the bus to retrieve papers and stand back a good distance from the bus. California’s procedure for crossing students at bus stops is vastly different and safer than the procedure of any other state in the nation. When a student needs to cross the road and the stop is designated as a “red light crossing”, the driver will “escort” the students across the road. The students are to follow all of the directions of the driver, and not cross the road until the driver verbally tells the student to proceed. The crossing maneuver is considered most dangerous and students must be aware, alert and follow all directions of the driver.

After September 1, 1992, Federal and State law requires all new school buses in California to be equipped with a stop sign on the side of the bus near the rear that will be extended at red light crossings. In addition, drivers that escort student are required to use a hand-held stop sign. Some of the older buses may not be equipped as such, so please be aware of buses with and without stop signs on them. Some of our newest buses will also have amber flashing lights next to the red ones that will be illuminated approximately 200 feet prior to the bus stop to warn motorists of the impending red light stop.

After January 1, 1998, school buses are required to use the red flashing lights every time they load and unload students, not just when students cross the road. Except, on a state highway with a posted speed limit of 55 mile per hour or higher (Hwy 168) where the school bus is completely off the main traveled portion of the highway. There is a dramatic increase in the number of times you will encounter school buses with their red lights flashing. As a passing or following motorist, you are required to stop until the lights are extinguished to protect the students. If you fail to stop, you may be fined up to $1000 and your driving privilege could be suspended for one year. As you know students may act in an unpredictable fashion. Stopping for the red lights prevents a potential tragedy.


Escorted Pick Up

  • At school bus stops students should wait a safe distance off the roadway.
  • Common courtesy should be used while waiting for the bus to arrive.
  • Upon arrival of the school bus, students must not enter the roadway until the bus driver has stopped the bus, activated the crossover lights, entered the roadway and has instructed students to cross the road.
  • Students shall cross the road between the front of the bus and the bus driver, watching for traffic as they cross.
  • Once they reach the bus entrance and board the bus they should seat themselves as quickly as possible.

Escorted Drop Off

  • Students shall remain seated until the school bus has come to a complete stop.
  • Once the bus has stopped and the bus driver has opened the door, students shall exit the bus behind the bus driver in an orderly manner.
  • Student will then stand to the right side of the bus (NOT IN FRONT OF) and wait for instruction from the driver to cross the roadway.
  • Students shall cross between the bus driver and the front of the bus, watching for traffic as they cross.
  • These procedures shall be done in an orderly manner.

Walking to and from School Bus Stops

  • Walking to and from school bus stops in our mountain area can be dangerous.
  • Narrow roads and shoulders can pose a problem when getting to or from our bus stops.
  • Always walk facing traffic. Walk single file when necessary to keep from walking in the roadway.
  • No pushing, shoving or horseplay of any kind shall be allowed at any time.
  • While waiting for the school bus at the designated stop, be courteous to other students. They should be at the bus stop five (5) minutes prior to the posted stop time.
  • Remember to wait until the bus has come to a complete stop and the bus driver has opened the entrance door before students move toward the bus.
  • Students should board the bus one-at-a-time, using the available handrails, and move quickly to an open seat.
  • If a student drops papers or other objects while boarding the bus, he/she should get the attention of the driver.


Danger Zones

Students are cautioned against entering the Danger Zone, which is the area ten (10’) feet around the school bus. Students exiting the bus should remain in the clear view of the bus driver.

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