Oct. 22-26 is National School Bus Safety Week and troopers and officers assigned to the Somers Resident State Trooper’s Office want to make residents and motorists aware of the designation.
“It’s been approximately one month since the children of our communities have returned to school and we want to remind motorists to be careful,” said Somers Resident State Trooper Sgt. Jose Claudio.
Claudio said that motorists know that a yellow traffic light means prepare to stop and red light mean stop, and that school bus warning lights work the same way.
Let Patch save you time. Get great local stories like this delivered right to your inbox or smartphone every day with our free newsletter. Simple, fast sign-up here.
“Flashing yellow means caution, the bus is preparing to stop,” he said. “Flashing red lights mean stop children are boarding or leaving the school bus.”
School buses make frequent stops to load and unload children, as it’s the nature of their business. Claudio said that motorists often don’t want to be inconvenienced or interrupted and thus don’t want to stop.
“We understand that, however, we hope our message is very clear, ‘Stop for the school bus as required by law, or you will stop for the police officer and the inconvenience will be much more costly,’” he said.
Claudio added that troopers will be extra vigilant this week and they have devised strategies to nab violators.
“One strategy, which may surprise motorists, is troopers will be riding the school buses and reporting violators to fellow officers,” he said.
There will be zero tolerance for drivers who pass a bus with red lights flashing. Violators will receive a hefty ticket. The fine in Connecticut for passing a stopped school bus is $465 dollars.
“Most children feel safe when they are walking to and from the school bus,” Claudio said. “They are often inattentive as they cross the street and as adults it is our obligation to keep them safe. Please slow down and drive safely.”