North Central News

Bus drivers given clearer rules for lights

Gov. Jan Brewer last month signed into law HB 2170, which provides clear direction to school bus drivers as to when and where they should activate their red lights and stop arm when loading and unloading children. The current law was considered not clear on whether the school bus driver must engage the bus warning lights and stop signs on private roads and driveways.

HB 2170 will amend the wording of Arizona Revised Statutes 28-857 to state, “When transporting school children to or from school or home, the operator of the school bus shall … display the signal and alternately flashing lights if passengers are being received or discharged while the school bus is stopped on the roadway or a private road or driveway as defined in section 28-601.”

Yvonne Hunter, an attorney with the law firm Fennemore Craig, said, “We believe that HB2170 will clarify, for training and operation purposes, that school bus drivers must engage the school bus warning lights and stop arm while loading or unloading students when transporting passengers to and from home and school. By changing the statute, this will be a first step toward implementing regulations and training for school bus drivers.”

Antonio Mlynek, transportation supervisor for Washington Elementary School District, says, “I am happy to see HB 2170 signed into law by Governor Brewer. The law is clear and makes sense. It’s the right thing to do.”

HB 2170 will go into law 90 days after the end of the current Arizona legislative session.

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