Rensselaer, IN -In an effort to provide safe transportation routes for students, the Rensselaer Police Department will conduct overtime patrols to enforce school bus safety.
Officers will be positioned along bus stops and routes over the next couple of months to identify stop-arm violations and motorists driving dangerously.
The program is part of Indiana’s Stop Arm Violation Enforcement (SAVE) initiative, which was launched in 2019 to combat the increasing number of violations that occur during the school year. The Indiana Criminal Justice Institute developed the program, which is funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Chief Anderson urges drivers to pay attention to the road, slow down and prepare to stop when they see a bus with flashing yellow lights. An estimated 450,000 violations could occur during the school year, according to a survey of Indiana bus drivers who reported more than 2,500 stop-arm violations in a single day.
In Indiana, it is illegal for motorists to pass a bus that has its red lights flashing and stop-arm extended. This applies to all roads, except on multi-lane roads divided by a physical barrier or unpaved median, where vehicles traveling in the opposite direction may proceed with caution.
To ensure the safety of students, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provides school bus safety tips, such as driving slower and being aware of children walking in the street. Drivers should also be prepared to stop when they see a bus with flashing yellow lights, and wait until the bus has stopped and the red lights have stopped flashing before proceeding.