LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – Students across Kentucky are preparing to return to school and adults are preparing for adjusted commutes.

The Kentucky Department of Education said 9,822 school buses transport more than 385,000 students to and from school.

In order to protect children, a school bus safety program is trying to better educate drivers on school bus stop etiquette and laws.

Who stops when a school bus stops?

On two-lane roads, everyone is expected to stop when a school bus stops to let passengers off or on.

On two-lane roads with a center turning lane, everyone is expected to stop when a school bus stops to let passengers off or on.

Who doesn’t stop?

While these situations don’t require everyone to stop, many officials advise people to be cautious anytime drivers see a school bus stop.

On a four-lane divided highway with no median, only cars following the school bus need to stop when a school bus stops to let passengers off or on.

On a four-lane roadway with a center turning lane, only the cars following the bus must stop when a school bus stops to let passengers off or on.

Tips for keeping children, drivers safe

The Kentucky Farm Bureau released tips for drivers who will be sharing the road with school buses.

  1. When backing out of a driveway or leaving a garage, watch out for children walking or bicycling to school. Also be on the lookout for children playing and congregating near bus stops.
  2. Be alert! Children in a hurry to catch the bus may dart into the street without looking for traffic.    
  3. Educate yourself on bus signals. Yellow flashing lights indicate the bus is preparing to stop to load or unload children. Motorists should slow down and prepare to stop their vehicles. Red flashing lights and extended stop arms indicate the bus has stopped and children are getting on or off. Motorists on both sides of the road must stop their cars and wait until the red lights stop flashing, the extended stop-arm is withdrawn, and the bus begins moving before they can start driving again.
  4. If you’re driving behind a bus, allow some room. The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus.   
  5. Remember that it is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children.   

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