In the region

Juniata County to take part in Safe Stop

MIFFLINTOWN — Juniata County School District transportation drivers will participate in the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s National School Bus Safety Week by documenting illegal passes that occur on their routes and, when possible, submit it to local authorities.

According to a news release, National School Bus Safety Week is Oct. 22 to 26.

An important part is Operation Safe Stop, a proactive approach to educate the public that passing a stopped school bus, when children are loading or unloading, is both dangerous and illegal.

During National School Bus Safety Week groups combine efforts to raise awareness about the potential consequences of illegal school bus passes, and to reduce their occurrence.

Pennsylvania’s school bus stopping law requires motorists to stop at least 10 feet away from school buses that have their red lights flashing and stop arm extended.

Motorists following or traveling alongside a school bus must also stop until the red lights have stopped flashing, the stop arm is withdrawn, and all children have reached safety. If physical barriers such as grassy medians, guide rails or concrete median barriers separate oncoming traffic from the bus, motorists in the opposing lanes may proceed without stopping.

Penalties for violating Pennsylvania’s school bus stopping law include a $250 fine, five points on the violator’s driving record, and a mandatory 60-day license suspension for a first offense.