Everyone has a responsibility to ensure students arrive at and from school safely. This includes being mindful of student safety when approaching school buses.

We want to take this week to remind Arkansans to obey all traffic laws whenever they are near a school bus.

It is illegal to pass a stopped school bus whenever its red lights are flashing, as students are present. The fines, penalties, and punishment for anyone found guilty of illegally passing a stopped school bus were increased dramatically by Act 2128 of 2005, also known as Isaac’s Law.

The legislation was named in honor of Isaac Brian, an elementary school student in the Bryant School District who was struck and killed when a driver illegally passed his school bus while students were exiting the vehicle.

The law requires drivers to stop on two-lane and four-lane highways in both directions, even those with a middle lane. Drivers cannot attempt to pass in any direction until the school bus vehicle has finished receiving or discharging its passengers and is in motion again.

In the 2021 Regular Session, the General Assembly passed Act 264 to clarify the distance and areas where drivers must stop.

It states drivers must come to a complete stop no less than 30 feet from the bus when it stops to load or unload passengers. This 30 feet perimeter would apply to public roads, private or public property open to the general public, and any driveway or parking lot belonging to a public school.

It is estimated that close to 350,000 students ride a school bus. Buses make stops in every Arkansas community. Remember: Flashing Red means Kids Ahead.

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