Residents urged to use caution around school buses

Published 3:46 pm Friday, August 16, 2013

Motorists are encouraged to exercise extra caution when traveling around Chilton County starting Monday as nearly 100 school buses resume regular pick-up and drop-off routes for the 2013–2014 school year.

For students, the greatest risk is not riding the bus but approaching or leaving the bus, according to a release from the Chilton County Schools Transportation Department.

Bus safety tips for motorists include:

•Slow down. Watch for children walking in the street, especially if there are no sidewalks in the neighborhood. Watch for children playing and congregating near bus stops.

•Be alert. Children are unpredictable and likely to take risks, ignore hazards or fail to look both ways when crossing the street.

•Notice bus lights and signs. School buses use yellow flashing lights to alert motorists that they are preparing to stop to load or unload children. Red flashing lights and an extended stop sign arm signals to motorists that the bus is stopped and children are getting on or off the bus. It is illegal to pass a school bus that is stopped and extremely dangerous for students.

“We will have 97 buses on the road Monday,” Chilton County Schools Superintendent Dave Hayden said. “Be patient with us. Things are going to be hectic.”