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Fall is in the Air – Driver and Pedestrian Safety

School Bus

It’s that time of year again, school is starting up which means more people on the road during rush hour. Whether you are walking, biking, or driving to your destination there a few things to remember to keep everyone safe. Drivers, obey the traffic laws, pay attention, and be defensive in driving. Pedestrians, be aware of your surroundings and be vigilant in identifying potential harm.

School Buses

The big yellow buses with flashing lights are hard to miss when they are out on the road, but what are the laws on how to safely get around them. Watch for kids all around the bus, that kid could be running late and hustling to get on the bus or kids getting off the bus after school eager to home. There are two colors of flashing lights, yellow and red, that indicate to you to take some action. When yellow lights are flashing that means that the bus is stopping to load or unload kids, you need to slow down and get ready to stop. Red flashing lights and an extended stop sign mean that kids are actively loading or unloading and you must stop until the stop sign is folded in.

Now there is the question of when you need to obey these laws, it is different depending on the kind of road you are on.

  • Two lane road – stop when approaching the bus from either direction.
  • Three or more lanes without a median or physical barrier like double yellow lines – stop when approaching the bus from either direction.
  • Three or more lanes with a median or physical barrier – stop if approaching the bus from behind. If on the other side of the road approaching the front of the bus, you may proceed without stopping.
  • Five or more lanes and a suicide lane – stop if approaching the bus from behind. If on the other side of the road approaching the front of the bus, you may proceed without stopping.

Crosswalks

Drivers and pedestrians collectively have a responsibility to ensure overall safety of everyone. Both pedestrians and driver’s need to be on the lookout for each other but is a reminder of the basics:

Pedestrians to-do List:
  • May not suddenly leave a curb or place of safety into the path of a vehicle.
  • Yield to vehicles if crossing at an unmarked crosswalk
  • Look for marked crosswalks.
  • Yield to emergency vehicles.
  • Pay attention to railroad grade crossing and bridges.
Driver’s to-do List:
  • Yield to pedestrians that are in a marked or unmarked crosswalk when the pedestrian is on or approaching the half of the road the vehicle is traveling.
  • Give audible signal if necessary.
  • Exercise precaution if children or an obviously confused person is nearby.
  • Yield to emergency vehicles.

Let’s keep each other safe out there.

If you were involved in this incident or a similar incident and have questions about your rights and options, call us or another reputable law firm.  Do not act solely upon the information provided herein. Get a consultation.  The best law firms will provide a free consultation. We provide a free, confidential consultation to not at fault persons named in this article.  The free consultation offer extends to family members as well. George Tait Law and its attorneys are licensed to practice law only in the State of Utah and maintain offices in Salt Lake City, Utah. No attorney client relationship is established by simply visiting this website.

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