With a new school year underway, the MD reminds motorists to drive with extra caution, watch for pedestrians, and pay attention to school bus signals.
A safer school season starts with you. Remember: Flashing AMBER lights mean use caution if passing a bus. Flashing RED lights mean stop a good four or five car lengths away, because children are exiting or entering the bus. Steep fines and significant demerits await motorists who fail to heed these important signals. The MD thanks drivers for exercising caution and vigilance around school buses.
When school bus lights are flashing
On an undivided highway (not divided by a median), do the following:
- When you approach a school bus from either direction (from the front or the rear), and it has the alternating amber lights flashing, you must be ready to stop. This is a warning that the alternating red lights are going to begin flashing and the school bus is stopping to allow students to get on or off.
- If you pass a school bus that has its alternating amber lights flashing, pass with caution.
- When the school bus stops to let students on or off, its alternating red lights will begin flashing. You will also see a stop sign extended from the left side of the school bus. You must come to a full stop about 20 metres (about 4 to 5 car lengths) away from the school bus. This distance allows drivers of other vehicles behind you to see the flashing lights and students crossing the highway.
- You must remain stopped until the alternating flashing red lights are turned off and the stop sign on the driver's side is no longer extended.
On a 2-lane undivided highway, both lanes must stop for a school bus.
On a highway divided by a median, do the following:
- When you approach a school bus from the rear and its alternating amber lights are flashing, follow the same procedures as you would for a highway that is not divided by a median.
- When you approach a school bus from the front and the school bus has its alternating amber or red lights flashing, you may proceed with caution. Watch for pedestrians. Remember, this is only on a divided highway.
These rules apply whenever and wherever the school bus lights are activated. Some municipalities have rules for school bus operation specific to their region.
On a 4 lane undivided highway, all 4 lanes must stop for a school bus.
On a highway divided by a median, vehicles to the rear of the school bus must stop.