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Time to stress school bus safety

As the start of the school year looms, Ohio drivers must be ready to pay attention again on school bus routes and in school zones. Law enforcement agencies are trying to get ahead of the curve by reminding residents of the rules.

For example, on a road with fewer than four lanes, all traffic approaching a stopped school bus from either direction must stop at least 10 feet from the front or back of the bus. Those vehicles must remain stopped until the stop sign is pulled in, the bus begins to move or the bus driver signals other drivers to proceed.

On a road with four or more lanes, only traffic moving in the same direction as the bus must stop.

Remember, we’re talking about children who are depending on you to keep an eye out as they dart in front of the bus and across the street on their way home. They are not always thinking it is their responsibility to move safely.

And, if waiting behind schools buses again throws off your normal time needed to get to work routine, then leave home earlier. Not hard to figure out. Also, before long we will be losing a lot daylight. It will get more difficult to see kids waiting or getting on buses.

Certainly in school zones the danger is just as great. Crossing guards are doing their best, but it is again up to drivers to obey the speed limits and keep their eyes open — stopping when necessary.

All of this means drivers must avoid distractions. They should be doing so at all times, anyway; but it is even more important as our kids head back to school and are relying on us to be paying attention as they go to and from.

Start the school year off on the right foot and get back in the habit of watching for buses and students. They’re counting on you.

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