School bus safety

Seaway News - - AUTO TALK -

As mil­lions of On­tario stu­dents head back to school, CAA North & East On­tario ( CAANEO) would like to re­mind every­one to study up on school bus safety. On­tario law re­quires mo­torists trav­el­ling in both di­rec­tions to stop when ap­proach­ing a stopped school bus with its up­per red lights flash­ing.

Not stop­ping for a school bus can cost you in more ways than one. For driv­ers fac­ing a first of­fence, the fine can be be­tween $ 400 and $ 2,000 and will cost you six de­merit points off your li­cence. For each sub­se­quent of­fence, the fines range from $ 1,000 to $ 4,000, on top of six de­merit points, as well as pos­si­ble jail time of up to six months.

Also re­mem­ber that school zones have a speed limit of 40 km/ h. Driv­ers can lose three de­merit points and be forced to pay a fine should they ex­ceed the speed limit by 16-29 km, while racing or go­ing 50 km over the speed limit will get you six de­merit points, a sus­pended li­cence and a fine of up to $ 10,000.

To help pro­tect chil­dren dur­ing this back-to-school sea­son, CAANEO urges mo­torists to

• drive cau­tiously and within the posted speed lim­its es­pe­cially in school zones and res­i­den­tial neigh­bour­hoods;

• be sure to come to a com­plete stop at all in­ter­sec­tions;

• watch for school bus and school zone warn­ing signs;

• watch for CAA School Safety Pa­troller cross­ing guards wear­ing bright green vests at cross­walks. The CAA School Safety Pa­trol Pro­gram has a proud his­tory in Canada and now in­cludes hun­dreds of schools and thou­sands of pa­trollers across the coun­try;

• be aware of the po­ten­tial for chil­dren to dart out from be­tween parked cars, school buses or build­ings; and to • al­ways stop for school buses that are load­ing or un­load­ing. By fol­low­ing th­ese sim­ple and sen­si­ble tips, you can do your part in en­sur­ing that all On­tario stu­dents make it to school safely!

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