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More Drivers Ignoring School Bus Laws

August 26, 2014, 4:55 PM by Jared Ransom

More Drivers Ignoring School Bus Laws

School Bus Inc runs 85 buses in Sioux Falls each day. Those drivers are always on the lookout for vehicles ignoring the warning signs on the bus.

"If you see a bus with an amber light, you should be ready to stop at any moment, and when the red light comes on, they definitely need to stop," Kevin Hansen said.

Those lights turn on 100 to 300 feet before the bus stops, yet bus drivers are seeing more people growing impatient and ignoring the lights.

"In the world today, people don't like to be delayed. They don't want to miss something that they're going to.  They're always in a hurry. So, they ignore the red lights," Hansen said.

Sioux Falls Bus drivers report about 250 violators each year to the state. Hansen says drivers are even starting to ignore the stop arm that extends off the side of the bus. It's a move that puts lives in danger.

"We have cars that barely miss our aides walking across the street with a child. We have cars that actually nick an aide now and then," Hansen said.

If you're caught driving by a bus with its lights flashing or the stop arm extended, you could receive a $250 fine, which could be doubled if the case goes to court.

Even with everything in place to keep the kids safe, bus drivers are surprised a big accident involving a child hasn't happened yet in the city.

"They should always remember, though, what the bus is doing and that's carrying the future of our country, the future of Sioux Falls and they should never take for granted that they can pass and nothing is going to happen," Hansen said.

School Bus Inc brings about 10,000 students to and from school every day.

In addition to a ticket, drivers who fail to stop could face up to 30 days in jail.

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