FLDOE's new school bus safety website includes a link to a nearly four minute video that explains the state's law the requires motorists to complete stop for any and all school buses with stop arm extended and red-light flashers that indicate the vehicle is in the process of loading or unloading students. Motorists must stop no matter which side of the street the school bus is in, except when the road has a concrete divider or median.
There are nearly 2 million illegal passbys of school buses each year, according to the Florida Highway Patrol and a statewide, one-day survey by school bus drivers performed this past spring.
The safety message also advises about proper following distances behind buses, which should be at least five feet. Other school bus safety tips for motorists include: watching for children at all times, especially near schools, bus stops, school buses and in parking lots; obeying all traffic laws and speeds limits, including in school zones; not passing other vehicles in school zones or at crosswalks and not changing lanes or making U-turns in school zones; obeying all signals from school crossing guards; not talking or texting on a cell phone while driving; and only parking or driving in authorized areas to pick up or drop off children at school.
FLDOE also asks parents to discuss with their children the safest way to get to and from school bus stops, or the school campus, itself. Parents are also reminded to instruct their kids never to run into the street or cross between parked cars.