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  1. #1
    Abbey16 is offline Junior Member
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    Passing school bus with flashing amber lights

    I was followed in my car today by a school district employee and accused of passing a school bus illegally. (The lights were yellow when I passed). The man actually followed me for about a mile through suburban neighborhoods. When I pulled over, he told me what I had allegedly done, said he reported it to the police, and there is a camera on the bus that will prove he is right and I am wrong.

    My question is, is there any reason or chance that the police would come to my home and arrest me for this? I have no previous traffic violations, except one failure to fully stop at a stop sign about 7 years ago. I am as about as clean as it gets!

    I am so upset, I hope someone will answer me. Please.
  2. #2
    Zigner is offline Senior Member
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    THIS FORUM IS FOR QUESTIONS ABOUT U.S. LAW ONLY
    When posting a question, you must include the name of your state!

    But, if you're in the US - you *might* receive a ticket in the mail.
  3. #3
    Abbey16 is offline Junior Member
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    Sorry- it's Delaware.
  4. #4
    FlyingRon is offline Senior Member
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    Expect a ticket to be delivered (either in person or in the mail).
    Delaware has a very active school bus safety program in operation which is what you were caught up in.

    It's a pretty serious charge in that it has a mandatory license suspension and at least a $115 fine.

    By the way, as long as the bus is stopped, you were required to stop for the yellow lights as well.


    (d)(1) Overtaking and passing school bus. -- When a school bus is stopped and displays flashing lamps in accordance with subsection (b) of this section, the driver of any vehicle approaching the school bus from the front or from the rear shall stop before passing the bus and remain stopped until such bus begins to move or no longer has the red stop lamps activated. On roadway or roadways with 4 or more lanes, the driver approaching from the front shall not stop.

    (2) The provisions of 4101(a) of this title or any other statute notwithstanding, the provisions of this subsection shall apply upon highways and elsewhere throughout the State.
  5. #5
    Abbey16 is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks fo rthe help.

    I forgot to mention that I was not stopped by a cop. It was supposedly called in by a school district employee- not the bus driver.

    The person who followed me said there is a camera on the bus. Another bus driver has told me there are no cameras. So, I just don't know what the truth is.

    Do the police ticket, etc., based on someone else's word?

    How are tickets delivered "in person" Do you mean by the police?
  6. #6
    FlyingRon is offline Senior Member
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    You don't have to be stopped by a cop. All it takes is a witness, but the statute even makes a provision for exactly the sort of enforcement you got.

    I can't vouch for the veracity of the camera requirement.

    Of course the police can issue tickets based on witness testimony.

    Yes, it's possible a cop will knock on the door and give you a summons, and if you're not there they'll just tape it to the door.
  7. #7
    Hey There is offline Member
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    Lightbulb AN ANSWER to your question

    TITLE 21
    4166. Overtaking and passing school bus; stop signal devices.

    (a) School bus. --
    Section (a )details rules for bus drivers.

    ******************************************************
    Section B --use of amber & red flashing lights on school buses
    ***************************************************
    b) School bus flashing lamps. --
    (1) School bus flashing lamps are intended to identify the vehicle as a school bus and to inform other users of the highway that such vehicle is about to stop or is stopped on the roadway or shoulder to take on or discharge school children. They are separate from the brake lamps and shall not be used in lieu of or to supplement the brake lamps.

    (2) The amber warning lamps shall be activated approximately 10 seconds prior to the red stop lamps to give motorists advance notice that the bus is preparing to stop or has stopped to pick up and discharge pupils. The lamps shall always be used prior to the red when available and shall be used only after the bus is relatively parallel with the travelway. The bus may be in motion when the amber warning lamps are activated.
    (3) The red stop lamps shall be activated only when the bus is stopped, but only when the bus is stopped on the shoulder or roadway to pick up and discharge pupils. The red stop lamps shall not be displayed while the bus is in motion either before or after a stop.

    (4) The amber warning lamps and/or the red stop lamps shall not be activated:

    a. In designated school bus loading zones;

    b. At intersections or other places where traffic is controlled by traffic-control signals or police officers;

    c. When the bus is not being used as a school bus; provided, however, the amber warning lights and/or the red stop lamps may be used any time the bus is transporting children under the age of 18.

    (c) School bus words. -- The words "SCHOOL BUS" shall be displayed whenever the bus is operated as a school bus. The words shall be covered, or concealed or removed when the bus is not in actual service as a school bus.

    (d)(1) Overtaking and passing school bus. -- When a school bus is STOPPED and displays flashing lamps in accordance with subsection (b) of this section, the driver of any vehicle approaching the school bus from the front or from the rear shall stop before passing the bus and remain stopped until such bus begins to move or no longer has the red stop lamps activated. On roadway or roadways with 4 or more lanes, the driver approaching from the front shall not stop.

    (2) The provisions of 4101(a) of this title or any other statute notwithstanding, the provisions of this subsection shall apply upon highways and elsewhere throughout the State.

    (e) Stopping of school bus on shoulder. -- Whenever practical, a school bus driver shall stop on the shoulder to pick up and discharge passengers.

    (f) Amber lights; exception. -- School buses not equipped with flashing amber lamps shall operate the red lamps only as permitted in paragraph (3) of subsection (b) of this section.

    (g) Identification of violators. -- If any vehicle is witnessed by a police officer, school bus operator or school crossing guard to be in violation of subsection (d) of this section and the identity of the operator is not otherwise apparent, it shall be a rebuttable presumption that the person in whose name such vehicle is registered committed such violation of subsection (d) of this section.

    (h) Bus operators, bus aides or crossing guards as witnesses. -- Whenever a school bus operator, a bus aide or a crossing guard is required to prepare, with legal counsel, for an appearance or to appear in any court as witness against a person who is alleged to have violated subsection (d) of this section, the witness shall be advised by the prosecutor assigned to the case by the Attorney General.

    Best Regards.
    Hey There
  8. #8
    JustAPal00 is offline Senior Member
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    Sounds to me like you won't be getting a ticket if as you say the amber lights were flashing. The question is will the employee that followed you tell the truth?
  9. #9
    FlyingRon is offline Senior Member
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    That's not what the law says. The school bus puts on it's yellow lights, it stops, you pass it, you violated the law.
  10. #10
    JustAPal00 is offline Senior Member
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    Ron I think you need to re read even your own post. The red lights are what matters.
  11. #11
    JustAPal00 is offline Senior Member
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    Another reason you should be OK is sub section G

    (g) Identification of violators. -- If any vehicle is witnessed by a police officer, school bus operator or school crossing guard to be in violation of subsection (d) of this section and the identity of the operator is not otherwise apparent, it shall be a rebuttable presumption that the person in whose name such vehicle is registered committed such violation of subsection (d) of this section.
  12. #12
    The Occultist is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustAPal00 View Post
    Ron I think you need to re read even your own post. The red lights are what matters.
    Hey There posted the full statute, and it disagrees with your opinion.

    (d)(1) Overtaking and passing school bus. -- When a school bus is STOPPED and displays flashing lamps in accordance with subsection (b) of this section, the driver of any vehicle approaching the school bus from the front or from the rear shall stop before passing the bus and remain stopped until such bus begins to move or no longer has the red stop lamps activated. On roadway or roadways with 4 or more lanes, the driver approaching from the front shall not stop.
    It specifies flashing lamps, but does NOT specify a color. Once the lamps are flashing, no matter the color, you may not pass the bus.
  13. #13
    JustAPal00 is offline Senior Member
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    I think the fact that the red lamps are called "Stop Lamps" and the amber lamps are called "Warning Lamps" would be some indication.
  14. #14
    The Occultist is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustAPal00 View Post
    I think the fact that the red lamps are called "Stop Lamps" and the amber lamps are called "Warning Lamps" would be some indication.
    If that were true, section d would specify that and not vaguely mention lamps. You're looking for what you believe to be the spirit of the law, but this is the letter of the law.
  15. #15
    JustAPal00 is offline Senior Member
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    We'll have to agree to disagree. I would like the OP to fill us in on the outcome. I wonder if the witness will be accepted, if you go by the letter of the law they won't. Also I think the definition of the lamps is clear that amber is a warning just like when approaching an intersection with a traffic light.

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