Trussville City Schools share safety tips during National School Bus Safety Week
By Tanna Friday
For The Tribune
TRUSSVILLE —Trussville City Schools’ Department of Transportation Department and the National Association of Pupil Transportation is commemorating National School Bus Safety Week this week.
Held each year during the third full week of October, the NAPT’s active campaign and evolving public education program addresses the importance of school bus safety.
The NAPT theme this year is #STOP ON RED!, which was created from last year’s NAPT poster winner, Branden Pagurayan, an eighth grader from Hawaii.
Approximately 2,500 students ride school buses within Trussville’s 64 routes each day, and the National School Bus Safety Week serves as a reminder for students, parents, teachers and the community members to keep school bus safety a priority.
“Awareness and overall safety for our children on the road and at bus stops is important to us,” said Dale Posey, coordinator of the city school’s transportation department. “With all of the distractions on t.he road today, school buses should get your attention. When you see a school bus lit up with lights flashing, it’s time to stop.”
For safety reasons, it is illegal to pass any school bus that is stopped and operating a visual signal — whether electronic or mechanical, Drivers, who violate the law could face fines up to $3,000, be guilty of a Class C felony, license suspension and community service hours.
According to Alabama statute, “a driver of a vehicle upon meeting or overtaking from either direction any school bus which has stopped for the purpose of receiving or discharging any school children on a highway, roadway, on school property…shall bring the vehicle to a complete stop…when there is in operation on the school bus a visual signal. The driver shall not proceed until the school bus resumes motion or is signaled by the school bus driver to proceed or the visual signals are no longer actuated.”
School buses, by law, must stop at all railroad crossings.
The following are some safety tips from the TCS Transportation Department:
— If you see a bus, please automatically be more alert of your surroundings since where there are buses, there are students either entering or exiting the bus;
— Never pass a school bus while the stop sign is extended; and
— Be courteous of bus drivers trying to access roads such as U.S. Highway 11, North Chalkville Road from side streets. It is difficult for a bus to make sharp turns, even more so during heavy traffic.