If you are a New York City parent of student who rides a school bus, you may be quite concerned about incidents of near-misses between cars and disembarking students. While there are laws in place that forbid motorists from passing stopped school buses, all it takes is one scofflaw to cause a horrific accident.
According to the New York State Association of School Pupil Transportation, researchers conducted a statewide study and discovered that, on a single day, approximately 30,252 motorists passed stopped school buses along the school bus drivers’ routes. Even worse, 280 drivers passed the buses on the side where the kids exit and board.
Back in January, the NY City Council passed laws that require the buses’ GPS systems to be accessed and monitored by the students’ parents during the bus route. This was passed as one segment of the School Transportation Oversight Package (STOP).
State lawmakers are pondering even more changes, as they may pass additional legislation allowing the City to fit the school bus fleet with cameras to capture those drivers who illegally pass the school buses. They would be electronically ticketed and face fines.
New York City parents who approve of the bus monitoring proposal may want to contact their state legislators to encourage them to vote to adopt the proposal.
If your child gets injured by a negligent motorist while boarding or exiting the school bus, their recovery could be long as costly. As their parent, it will be up to you to advocate for your child by taking action to preserve their right to pursue compensation for their injuries, losses and damages stemming from the accident.