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News259764

Residents reminded to watch out and stop for students, safety patrol and school buses

August 30, 2017

As Moorhead students prepare to return to school on Sept. 5, representatives of AAA, Moorhead Area Public Schools, West Fargo Public Schools, Moorhead, West Fargo and Fargo Police Departments, and Minnesota and North Dakota Highway Patrols spoke Aug. 28 about road safety around schools and school buses.

Gene LaDoucer from AAA spoke of the organization’s “School’s Open Drive Carefully” campaign and reminded drivers to use extra caution as children head back to school.

“AAA wants to remind motorists they play a key role in the safety of our children,” he said, recommending that drivers slow down in school zones, eliminate distractions, and be careful backing up.

School officials from Moorhead Area Public Schools and West Fargo Public Schools reminded drivers to be more vigilant of students walking to schools and bus stops. Transportation directors emphasized the stop-arm violations that occur each year.

“When you’re driving near schools buses, please slow down and attend to the matter at hand,” said Dan Bacon, director of transportation for Moorhead Area Public Schools.

Drivers must stop at least 20 feet from a school bus that is displaying red flashing lights or a stop arm when approaching from the rear and from the opposite direction on undivided roads.

Last year there were 225 stop-arm violations in Moorhead. Cameras on the school buses will record the stop-arm violations and are used in prosecuting violators. Minimum fine in Minnesota has increased to $500 this fall.

Additionally, the Department of Public Safety offers these suggestions:


Motorists

• In Minnesota, motorists must stop at least 20 feet from a school bus that is displaying red flashing lights or a stop arm when approaching from the rear and from the opposite direction on undivided roads.
• Motorists should slow down, pay attention and anticipate school children and buses, especially in neighborhoods and school zones.
• The best way to be aware of your surroundings at all times is to put the distractions away.

Students

• When getting off a bus, look to be sure no cars are passing on the shoulder.
• Wait for the bus driver to signal that it’s safe to cross.
• When crossing the street to get on the bus or to go home, make eye contact with motorists before proceeding.

 

Photo Caption: Dan Bacon, director of transportation for Moorhead Area Public Schools, reminds drivers to slow down and eliminate distractions when driving near school buses during a joint news conference on Aug. 28. Representatives from AAA, Moorhead Area Public Schools, West Fargo Public Schools, Moorhead, West Fargo and Fargo Police Departments, and Minnesota and North Dakota Highway Patrols spoke about road safety around schools and school buses.

Categorized under: School