Illegal passing of school buses remains a concern locally, nationally


Marshalltown Community School District Transportation Director Don Meyer said the issue of motorists driving around school bus stop arms continues to be a concern.

The stop arms are meant to keep cars a safe distance away when buses are picking up and dropping off children.

Meyer said district bus drivers witness several stop arm violations and other illegal passes of buses from motorists in Marshalltown each week. This is also an issue nationally as a one-day survey of 97,000 school bus drivers nationwide saw 75,996 vehicles illegally passing stopped school buses.

“Any driver who passes a stopped school bus illegally is endangering children and possibly even his or her own future,” said Leon Langley, president of the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services. “Trying to save a few seconds by passing a school bus and hitting a child can be devastating not only for the victims and their families, but also for the motorist who will have to live with the sad consequences.”

Possible fines for these violations can range from $250 to $670 with possible 30 days in jail and a 30-day license suspension, Meyer said.