Local News

Troopers Step Up Bus Sa

Posted April 24, 1997 12:00 a.m. EDT

— The next time you pass a stopped school bus, you may want to think again. One of the passengers on board may be wearing a badge.

Each day, hundreds of drivers refuse to stop for school buses as they pick up and drop off kids. Troopers took to the road on Thursday, riding in school buses across the area. They wanted to see for themselves just how serious the problem is.

In one day last week, Wake County officials saw 483 cars ignoring stopped school buses. Bus driver Cathy McLean says that when drivers ignore safety while she's doing her job, they are putting kids in danger.

Highway Patrol Sgt. Jeff Winstead said that since October 1995, 339 citations have been issued to drivers who ignored stopped buses. However, the concern is that only a fraction of the people who break the rules are actually caught.

If you get caught passing a stopped school bus, the penalties are very stiff. You could get up to 90 days in jail, a $200 fine, a 90% increase in your insurance rates, and 5 points on your license.