School Bus Traffic Stop Laws
The loading/unloading zone at North Park is located on N J Street, which is on the North side of the building and Custer Preschool loading/unloading zone is located on the East side or S 6th Ave. These loading zones are marked with signs stating that you can proceed unless the loading/unloading lights on the bus are flashing and the stop sign is extended. You will need to stop and wait at these locations if the red loading lights on the bus are flashing and the stop arm is extended. The loading/unloading zone at the Middle School is located on Memorial Drive next to the Activities Building and it is located out of the traffic lane, so the buses do not have to turn the overhead lights on or extend the stop arm while in this loading zone. We have a loading zone on the West side of the Middle School (N 9th Ave) it is also out of the traffic lane, so the same regulations apply as on Memorial Drive.
Broken Bow Public Schools has 1 pre-school for the 2016-17 school year, Custer Preschool located at 727 South 6th Ave. We have 3 teachers who have 2 classes each during the day at this location, which means we have 2 buses picking students up at times that drivers may not expect to see a school bus on the road. The routes times are approximately --- 8:00- 8:35 AM - student pickups, 10:50-12:05 - student drop-offs and student pickups, and one at 2:50 – 3:15 PM for student drop-offs. These two buses then proceed with the cross town/afternoon routes from the K-12 schools.
The only times oncoming traffic is not required to stop for a school bus loading or unloading students is when there is a designated loading/unloading zone which is out of the lane of traffic, or when that traffic is in the opposite side of a divided roadway, such as on North 10th Ave.
When approaching a school bus, with the student loading/unloading lights flashing and the stop arm extended, from either direction, stop a safe distance from the bus and remain stopped until the lights are off and the stop arm has been retracted. In the past we have had drivers treat as if this is a stop sign at an intersection, they stop and then proceed right past the bus.
We attempt to plan our bus routes so we are able to load/unload all preschool students as well as route riders on the right side, so they do not have to cross the street or road. Please be sure not to pass the stopped bus as the student may drop an item which may blow or roll into the street or road and they may chase after it.
The Nebraska State Statues were changed in 2012 to allow for a fine of $500.00 and the accumulation of 3 points against your driver’s license per occurrence.
Remember, any time a stopped school bus is in an area, there will be children in that area.
These students are the future of our town, our state and our nation. Who knows, we may have a future city council member, a mayor, State or US Senator or Representative for the state, or possibly a future President of the United States. We do not know what the future holds for any of the children we transport, so we need to protect them to the best of our ability, and with your help we can do just that.
It’s not only the law, it’s a child’s life.