School Bus Safety: Rules of the Road
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - With most area schools are now back in session, drivers are reminded to share the road with school buses. 16 News Now’s Tricia Sloma spoke to Brittany Ingle, the Fulton County mother who fought for changes to Indiana’s school bus safety laws.
“Families are getting their kids back to school, what do you want them to remember?” Sloma asked Ingle. “First of all, I want them to remember my children, Mason, Alivia and Xzavier.”
The three siblings, Alivia Stahl and her twin brothers Mason and Xzavier Ingle, were trying to board their bus when they were struck and killed October 30, 2018.
“That’s what I want to talk about today, is MAXSTRONG and bus safety and remember we all need to pay attention when we send our kiddos out the door,” said Ingle.
When you leave home, plan ahead.
“Leave a little early for our schedules if work is something on your mind where you’re going to be late, give yourself and allow yourself more time,” said Ingle.
If you live on a street with heavy traffic, pay attention and speak up.
“With the MAXSTRONG law we are able to petition for lower speed limits through these zones,” said Ingle.
And let your district know if your kids have to cross a busy road to board the bus. The MAXSTRONG law prevents children from crossing Indiana highways.
“Be in communication with your school districts. You know your area and your home and how traffic flows through there,” said Ingle.
The laws also allows Indiana schools to use stop arm cameras on their buses.
“As we’ve seen, the technology works,” said Ingle.
The cameras capture the license plates and images of drivers who pass illegally. The evidence can be used for prosecution.
“I think everybody should ask when their kids are returning, be open with their schools and ask how many of their buses are equipped with stop arm cameras. And if they’re not, how can we encourage them to get them,” said Ingle.
There’s more education too.
“A lot of people before this, didn’t know the rules of the road,” said Ingle.
At the BMV there’s now more emphasis on school bus safety.
“A part of this law when they renew their license or get their license it’s refreshing their memories about school buses,” said Ingle.
The most important rule of the road? Stop for stopped school buses. Don’t pass.
“I have seen it first-hand since my children were killed,” said Ingle.
It happened as Brittany’s oldest child, Selena Stahl was getting off a bus.
“I watched this person see the bus stop and just flew right past it and it’s just gut-wrenching,” said Ingle. “We can’t make excuses, or paint the picture any other color any more. We have to nail it for what it is. Not be passive or think it’s never going to happen to your school district? Or think it’s never going to happen to your children.”
Be aware and do your part to help kids get to and from school safe and sound.
“It just takes working together. Look, it takes a village to raise kids and it’s going to take a village to protect children as well,” said Ingle.
In Fulton County, all of the school buses at Rochester and Tippecanoe Valley Schools are equipped with stop arm cameras. Caston School Corporation has 13 of 18 school buses equipped with stop arm cameras.
Remember, if you see a bus stopped with red flashing lights, you are required to stop in both directions. Here is a helpful guide for the rules of the road:
Copyright 2021 WNDU. All rights reserved.