DELAWARE, OH (WCMH) — Coupling with National School Bus Safety Week, local law enforcement will be riding school buses on the lookout for violators.
Nearly 3,000 Delaware City School students ride the bus every day.
“We know our school buses are the safest way that kids and can to and from School,” said Paul Craft, Superintendent of the Delaware City School District. “But part of that safety equation is our other citizens around the community respecting the traffic laws.”
Delaware County law enforcement, the state highway patrol, and the Delaware City School District are joining forces so students riding the bus stay safe.
“We will be riding with students on school buses across the county on Tuesday and Wednesday,” said Bruce Pijanowski, Delaware City Chief of Police. “We will be aggressively enforcing our school zones the rest of the week.”
When a driver sees a stopped school bus, by law, they are required to stop at least 10 feet from the bus while children are getting on and off. Drivers are not allowed to pass a bus when its red flashing lights are on. If you do, that is considered an automatic traffic violation.
“There will be officers on the bus as an observer and they will be calling off violations to officers patrolling in cruisers,” said Pijanowski.
Last year local police received over 100 complaints from bus drivers saying a driver illegally passed them.
“We get about five to six a week where a school bus driver calls us sends us a letter,” said Lt. Marcus Pirrone, of the Delaware Highway Patrol Post.
Failing to stop for a school bus can get your license suspended and you could be forced to pay a $500 fine.
Officers say there will be zero tolerance when it comes to school bus safety. Violators will be ticketed if caught breaking the law.