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September 8th, 2021

Kids are Back to School!

School brings traffic congestion, whether it’s the buses picking up and dropping off students, parents in line to pick up students, and kids walking and riding bikes. School also means students on bikes and on the sidewalks. 

Share the road with the kids! This means drivers need to slow down, pay attention and watch out for children and extra vehicles. Remember younger students don’t always look both directions before crossing the road, and don’t always check for traffic. Please assume the kids don’t see you and be prepared to stop quickly if needed.

When To Stop When the School Bus Lights are Flashing or the Stop Bar is Out:

It can be confusing on what the traffic rules are in Washington state. If the school bus lights are flashing or its stop bar is out:

  • If you are on a road with three or more lanes, you will need to stop if you are traveling in the SAME direction as the school bus. You are not allowed to resume driving until the red lights stop flashing and the stop-arm is retracted. If you are traveling in the OPPOSITE direction, you can keep going.
  • If the road has a turn lane in the middle, cars traveling in the SAME direction must stop. Again, if you are traveling in the OPPOSITE direction, you can keep going.
  • If there is an island or road median between the opposing directions, you will need to stop if you are traveling in the SAME direction as the school bus. You are not allowed to resume driving until the red lights stop flashing and the stop-arm is retracted. If you are traveling in the OPPOSITE direction, you can keep going.
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