GENTRY POLICE BLOTTER
GENTRY — Fred Thompson, 75, of Decatur, was cited and released in connection with failure to stop for a stopped school bus on the afternoon of March 5 in Gentry.
According to police reports and a report of the bus driver, a Gentry school bus was stopped and dropping off passengers in the northbound lane of Pioneer Lane at Avalon when a southbound 2008 Ford Taurus in the far right lane failed to stop for the bus which had red lights flashing and the stop sign extended.
According to police reports, Thompson said he was watching his speed and did not realize he had passed a stopped school bus.
When a school bus stops and displays its alternating red warning lights for the purpose of loading or unloading passengers, Arkansas code requires drivers of motor vehicles meeting or overtaking the school bus from any direction to bring their motor vehicles to a complete stop before reaching the school bus and to not start up or attempt to pass in any direction until the school bus has finished loading or unloading its passengers and is moving again. An exception is made for multi-lane divided highways of four or more lanes with a divider of 20 or more feet between the lanes in which the bus is stopped and the lanes of an approaching motor vehicle.
Penalties when a driver is found guilty, according to Arkansas Code (27-51-1001), include fines between $250 and $1,000, up to 90 days in jail, possible community service and suspension of driving privileges from 21 days to one year.