School is open in Southwest Florida which means there is usually heavy congestion around our schools, particularly when dropping off or picking up students, warns Fort Myers Accident Lawyer Randall Spivey of Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. This congestion makes it important for drivers to slow down and pay attention to what is happening around them.
Our Fort Myers accident lawyers believe it is also important to be cautious when sharing the roads with school buses to avoid school bus accidents. The National Safety Council (NSC) recommends the following:
If you're driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It will give you more time to stop once the yellow lights start flashing. It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children.
- Never pass a bus from behind – or from either direction if you're on an undivided road – if it is stopped to load or unload children
- If the yellow or red lights are flashing and the stop arm is extended, traffic must stop
- 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
- Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says drivers need to:
- Understand the meaning of school bus lights:
- - Yellow flashing lights– drivers should slow down in order to stop their vehicle in time.
- - Red flashing lights– this warns you that the bus has stopped and that children are either getting onto the bus or getting off or that they are preparing to do so.
- Know how to react:
- When the bus has red flashing lights, you must:
- Stop if traveling behind the bus.
- Stop if your vehicle is alongside a bus.
- Stop if you approach an intersection where a school bus has flashing lights.
- - Keep your distance. Although children are instructed to never walk behind a school bus, drivers should be cautious about how close they stop to the bus. Many states have strict regulations on how far you must stop from a bus that has flashing red lights and the stop arm extended. Drivers must also wait until the children are in a safe location, either on the bus or on the side of the road. Do not move until the bus driver has turned off the flashing lights, the extended stop arm is withdrawn, and the bus has started moving.
“Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. handles accident claims throughout Florida. We put your child’s interests first to ensure she or he receives the damages needed to recover from injuries and get back to a normal life. If you or a loved one is injured in an accident, please contact our experienced team of Fort Myers accident lawyers after seeking medical attention. All of our clients have unique personal injury cases. Our firm provides personal contact and communication along with aggressive representation. We are available to assist you 24/7, and there are no costs or attorney fees until we receive a monetary recovery for you,” said Fort Myers Accident Lawyer Randall Spivey.
Fort Myers Accident Lawyer Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one percent (1%) of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at 239.337.7483 or toll-free at 1.888.477.4839, or by email to Randall@SpiveyLaw.com. Visit SpiveyLaw.com for more information. You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. in Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and in Collier County at 239.793.7748.