School is back, and so are school buses.

The primary function of a school bus is to get children safely to school and then back.  We can all help, and also avoid getting tickets, by knowing and following the below summarized traffic rules relating to school buses:

When a school bus stops and displays the stop signal, any person driving on the road or highway, in either direction, must come to a complete stop. The vehicle may not pass the bus until the stop signal has been withdrawn.  If a vehicle is traveling in the opposite direction of the school bus on a highway that is divided by at least five 5 feet of unpaved space, a raised median, or a physical barrier, the vehicle is not required to stop. (1)

And while at it, let’s refresh our knowledge of what to do when there is an ambulance or police vehicle with a siren:

Upon the approach of an emergency vehicle displaying lights and sirens, the driver of every vehicle must pull over to the right-of-way in a position parallel to the closest edge of the curb and shall remain there until the emergency vehicle has passed.  If an emergency vehicle is parked on the side of the two-lane road and emergency signals are being displayed, the driver of any approaching vehicle must change lanes so that the lane closest to the emergency vehicle is empty. If the approaching vehicle is not able to change lanes, the driver must reduce his/her speed down to 20 MPH if the posted speed limit is 25 MPH or greater or 5 MPH if the posted speed limit is 20 MPH or less. (2)

What are the requirements when you have been in a small accident and you and the people who rear ended you have your vehicles in the middle of the road and you have called the police?

If a vehicle has been involved in a “fender bender” where there is only vehicle damage, the driver must immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the crash. Every stop must be made without obstructing traffic more than necessary, however, if the vehicle is obstructing traffic the driver must make every reasonable effort to move the vehicle so it does not block the regular flow of traffic. (3)

And it never hurts to remind ourselves of red light etiquette, especially with the overpopulation of red light cameras:

When approaching a red light, the driver of the vehicle must come to a complete stop either at the stop line or before entering the crosswalk. If the driver has a view on the approaching traffic at the red light intersection, the driver may make a right turn, but must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians and to the proceeding traffic.

When driving on a one-way street that intersects another one-way street where the traffic flows to the left, the driver must come to a complete stop at the red light; however, the driver may make a left turn onto a one-way street. The vehicle must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians & to the proceeding traffic. (4)

1) Florida Statute ‘316.172; 2) Florida Statute ‘316.126; 3) Florida Statute ‘316.061; 4) Florida Statute ‘316.075