B.C. Driver Alert: When the School Bus Stops, You Stop

Stop for School Bus Sign

From September to June, parents in rural areas send their children off to school on the big yellow school bus, trusting that their child will get to class and back home safely each day. They are counting on motorists to do the right thing (the law-abiding thing) by coming to a complete stop when approaching a school bus with its red lights flashing.

Sadly, not everyone does stop when the school bus lights are flashing and kids could be on the road. And every time someone doesn’t stop for the bus, a child’s life is at risk. This is becoming a concern in School District No. 60 (Peace River North) near Fort St. John. The area has a very young population and the highest birthrate in B.C. That’s a lot of kids of all ages walking on highways to board the bus, or to head home after stepping off the school bus.

Remember

Around Fort St. John, school bus drivers are seeing motorists “running” school buses (just like running a red light or stop sign – and just as dangerous) on a daily basis.

“School bus drivers document the offending vehicle’s licence plate number and file reports to the police, who then press charges,” says School District No. 60 Safe Stop Coordinator Cindy Dettling. “It is sad, but drivers need to be reminded of the importance of stopping for the flashing lights of school buses.”

To bring attention to the issue, the school district and the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure hold an annual “Safe Stop” event where the big yellow buses are parked around town to attract attention. School district employees and other safety allies talk to people and hand out “Safe Stop” flyers, and a Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement officer is there to speak drivers and the public.

“Basic poor driving is putting busloads of kids in jeopardy,” says our Area Manager Florian Kund, who has a niece nearing school age. Florian is acutely aware of past school bus tragedies and where there have been near misses.

Adam Ranger was five years old when he was killed by a truck near his driveway, after exiting a school bus, in 2000, in Ontario. Adam’s family channelled some of their grief and anger into the “Let’s Remember Adam – Stop for the School Bus” campaign which continues today.

“I often wonder what kind of man he would be, what he would do for a living, and what his job would be,” Adam’s brother Pierre Ranger told CBC News. “But, I’ll never get to find out because someone didn’t stop for the bus lights.”

Remember Adam
So, next time you see a school bus stopped with its lights flashing, remember Adam, youngsters in the Peace area and kids everywhere. Think also of the parents, siblings, grandparents, relatives, friends and neighbours who are waiting for the children return home safely. Then stop.

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5 Responses to B.C. Driver Alert: When the School Bus Stops, You Stop

  1. coby on January 18, 2019 at 1:28 pm

    this was so great thank you ima make sure i am careful around school buses

  2. Pierre Ranger on August 4, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    My name is Pierre Ranger and I am Adam Ranger’s oldest brother and the chair of the Let’s Remember Adam STOP FOR THE SCHOOL BUS campaign. I would just like to send a HUGE Thank you to you for posting this and helping spread Adam’s message of school bus safety! If there is anything I can do to help please do not hesitate to ask. Please feel free to contact me at our let’s remember Adam email info@letsrememberadam.org. My family and I can not stress enough the importance of STOPPING for the school buses! Our life’s were flipped up side down and torn about after someone did not stop for the bus lights and we lost Adam. But it’s not just the school bus you need to pay extra attention too its also the kids walking to and from school as well. Our number 1 goal of the Let’s Remember Adam campaign is that all school children everywhere make it to and from school safely! No one should ever have to go through what my family and I went through and continue to go through. Once again Thank you so much for spreading the message!

    Pierre Ranger and the Ranger family!!

    • Anonymous on August 5, 2015 at 3:06 pm

      Dear Pierre Ranger and the Ranger Family,

      So sorry for your loss of Adam. I hope that your extended efforts, to prevent the loss of other young lives, are of some consolation.

      Thanks so much for your support for our blog to educate people to stop for stopped school buses. Your campaign around your tragic loss of Adam personalizes the lifelong, devastating impacts of poor driving. It`s our hope that this blog, your Let’s Remember Adam STOP FOR THE SCHOOL BUS campaign, and other awareness activities will influence motorists everywhere to obey the law and drive carefully around children.

      I hugely appreciate your offer of collaboration to keep school children safe. With the start of school next month, it would be great to connect over the next week or two, on ways to capture the attention of motorists. We all want children to return home safely, and motorists to really think about how they are driving when around school buses and other places children might be.

    • tranbceditor on August 5, 2015 at 3:09 pm

      Dear Pierre Ranger and the Ranger Family,

      So sorry for your loss of Adam. I hope that your extended efforts, to prevent the loss of other young lives, are of some consolation.

      Thanks so much for your support for our blog to educate people to stop for stopped school buses. Your campaign around your tragic loss of Adam personalizes the lifelong, devastating impacts of poor driving. It`s our hope that this blog, your Let’s Remember Adam STOP FOR THE SCHOOL BUS campaign, and other awareness activities will influence motorists everywhere to obey the law and drive carefully around children.

      I hugely appreciate your offer of collaboration to keep school children safe. With the start of school next month, it would be great to connect over the next week or two, on ways to capture the attention of motorists. We all want children to return home safely, and motorists to really think about how they are driving when around school buses and other places children might be.

    • Anonymous on March 15, 2016 at 11:16 am

      Hi Pierre,

      Wanted to let you know about plans underway in B.C. to increase penalties for those who do not stop for the school bus: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2016TRAN0043-000354

      Thanks for your continued work in Ontario to make children safer, and which helps draw attention to the issue everywhere.

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