It’s time: Remember school bus safety

With the school year about to begin, more school buses will be on the road.

Parents are reminded to talk to their kids about bus safety. Motorists are reminded to share the road.

“The beginning of a new school year is a time when children are at an increased risk of transportation-related injuries,” said Community Service Trooper Geno Basanese of the Michigan State Police Post in Iron Mountain.

“To reduce the chance of such incidents occurring, we encourage parents to teach their children about proper behavior around a bus.”

Parents should talk to their children about the School Bus Danger Zones that extend 10 feet from the bus in all directions. When leaving the bus, children should walk 10 feet away from the bus before turning.

Children crossing in front of the bus should move forward away from the bus until they can make eye contact with the driver. They should never cross in front of the bus without the driver’s permission.

Additional safety tips for parents to share with their children:

– Have a safe place to wait for the bus, away from traffic and the street.

– Do not run or play while waiting for the bus.

– Make sure to always remain in clear view of the bus driver. Never go behind the bus.

– Stay away from the bus until it comes to a complete stop and the driver signals you to enter.

– Walk to the bus stop with a buddy.

– Mind all traffic signals and/or the crossing guard. Never cross the street against a light, even if you don’t see traffic coming.

– Do not talk to strangers. Tell your parents if a stranger tries to talk to you.

– Never leave with a stranger or get into a stranger’s vehicle.

With the increase of school bus traffic, motorists are reminded to pay attention to school bus lights and observe the school bus stop law.

When approaching a school bus with its lights activated, motorists should always:

– Prepare to stop when a slowing bus has its overhead yellow lights flashing.

– Come to a complete stop at least 20 feet away from the bus when its overhead red lights are flashing. Do not proceed until the bus resumes motion and/or you are signaled to do so by the bus driver.

– Proceed with caution when the hazard warning lights, located near the headlights, are flashing.

More information is available by contacting Trooper Basanese at the state police post, (906) 774-2122.