By: Mark Brady, PGFD PIO
The week of October 21st-October 25th is National School Bus Safety Week. This public education campaign focuses on the importance of school bus safety, especially when it comes to other drivers on the road.
The Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department is proud to support the Maryland Center for School Safety and the National Association of Pupil Transportation and do its part to make sure drivers are aware of the law and the importance of school bus safety.
“We are requesting the help of our partners and the entire community in reminding all drivers about school bus stop arm safety,” said Maryland Center for School Safety Executive Director Kate Hession. “We have placed messaging in all of the Motor Vehicle Administration service centers throughout the state and launched a new school bus safety public service announcement on social media, television, and digital billboards to remind drivers to STOP for any school bus with its flashing lights on and stop arm extended.”
In Maryland, it is illegal to pass a school bus with its red lights flashing and stop-arm extended when it has stopped to load or unload students. The law states that if a school vehicle has stopped on a road and is operating the alternately flashing red lights, the driver of any vehicle following or approaching the school bus must stop at least 20 feet from the front or rear of the school vehicle.
Failure to stop for the bus can result in up to a $500 fine, three points on a driver’s license, and increased insurance rates.
For more information on National School Bus Safety Week, visit www.napt.org/nsbsw. You can also follow the Maryland Center for School Safety on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram all week to share their information and tips at hashtag #NSBSW.