Summer coming to an end, watch out for children and school buses

Public school in Bellevue and Seattle begins in just a couple of weeks and it is important that all drivers be careful as traffic patterns change, school buses stop to pick up passengers and children begin walking to school.

It is important for parents and caregivers who are dropping off and picking up kids from school to obey the school traffic control officers and use the recommended traffic flow plans. Especially in the first few weeks of school, it is not uncommon for a child to dart into traffic when they see their parent’s car or friends call to them from across a street.

Now is the time to talk with your child about where you will be dropping them off and picking them up. If your child is walking to school, it is recommended that you practice walking to and from school, going over their route and reminding them to stop, look, listen and look again before crossing an intersection. If your student will be biking to school, make sure that their bicycle helmet fits properly and that they understand the rules of the road.

It is also recommended that parents monitor their children the first few days of school to make sure they are remembering the rules of crossing the street and riding their bicycles. Children need a lot of reminders.

Traffic Safety Recommendations

The Farber Law Group reminds motorists to slow down and be extra careful when you see a school bus, a school zone or when children are present.

  • Watch for children walking to school
  • Watch for children at school bus stops as children may dart across the street to get to the bus top
  • Be careful backing out of your driveway or leaving your garage as children may be biking or walking to school
  • Be patient with school crossing guards who may be “learning the ropes” during the first few weeks of school

Safety Around School Buses

Remember that school bus stops may be in unexpected places. As cities like Bellevue have built more condominium and apartment units in the downtown urban core, one has to remember that many of these units are homes to children and their buses stop for them in unexpected places like on Bellevue Way in front of the Bellevue Square mall.

One of the most devastating pedestrian accidents is when a child is hit by a school bus. Children need to be taught how to be safe around buses and to understand that school buses have blind spots and the driver may not be able to see them if they walk or run in front of the bus. Children must be reminded that the most dangerous part of their school bus ride is getting on and off of the bus. Nationally, more children are killed outside of school buses than within a school bus during an accident. Most of these accidents occur during daytime hours and clear weather. Read Teach your children school bus safety.

If you are a motorist, remember you are required to stop when you see flashing red lights and an extended stop arm on a two-lane road. If you are driving on a roadway with two or more travel lanes in each direction, you must stop if you see the red lights and you are traveling in the same direction as the school bus. Remember it is illegal to pass a school bus when red lights are flashing.

Every year, more than 4,000 motorists run through school bus lights and stop signs in Washington state. Washington state law, RCW 46.61.370, imposes a $394 fine for failing to stop for a school bus. This is a fine that cannot be reduced, suspended or waived. A police officer need not be present for a motorist to be reported to the police. School bus drivers have been trained on how to be a good witness and may fill out the form to cite a driver and this form is admissible in court.

Bellevue Pedestrian Accident Attorney

This information is provided by Seattle Car Accident Lawyer blog, a service of The Farber Law Group. We represent people who have been seriously injured in pedestrian accidents, auto accidents and bus accidents. If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident, or a loved one has been killed, The Farber Law Group is here to answer your legal questions and insure your legal rights are protected.

Contact The Farber Law Group at 1-800-244-9087 or to schedule a free and confidential case evaluation. Our Bellevue office is here to assist you.

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3 students seriously injured in Quincy school bus accident, several suffer minor injuries
Teach your children school bus safety

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