We re­peat, you must stop for a school bus

Waterloo Region Record - - EDITORIALS & COMMENT -

This ed­i­to­rial ran in the Hal­i­fax Chron­i­cle Her­ald:

What part of stop don’t driv­ers get? With an­other school year un­der­way, we are once again re­mind­ing driv­ers to watch out for stu­dents head­ing to and from school. And since in too many cases a gi­ant yel­low bus with red lights flash­ing and a stop sign ac­ti­vated isn’t enough to get all mo­torists to stop, please heed these words: Red means stop.

When you see a school bus with its red lights ac­ti­vated, it is im­per­a­tive that you stop, since the al­ter­na­tive can be tragic. To put it bluntly, it could lead to in­jury or death.

Over 80,000 stu­dents in Nova Sco­tia travel by school bus ev­ery day. Last year, provincewide, there were over 1,500 school bus red light vi­o­la­tions.

Year af­ter year, school boards amass a grow­ing list of cases where mo­torists do not stop when a school bus’s red lights and stop sign are ac­ti­vated. These vi­o­la­tions hap­pen ev­ery month of the school year. De­spite aware­ness cam­paigns and me­dia sto­ries, the num­ber of vi­o­la­tions has gone up each of the past few school years.

It leaves the school board mem­bers con­cerned, frus­trated, be­wil­dered, an­gry and scared. We should all share in these emo­tions. Mo­torists must be mind­ful of stu­dents who travel to and from school on school buses, just as you keep an eye out for those walk­ing to school.

As much as bus driv­ers, par­ents and teach­ers re­mind stu­dents to be care­ful when get­ting on or off a school bus, some­times stu­dents can be dis­tracted. They’re kids. But most of the time, stu­dents take for granted that the safety equip­ment on buses will keep them safe.

And why wouldn’t they? This is among the ear­li­est lessons most peo­ple learn in life: red means stop.

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