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Approaching, overtaking, and passing a school bus

Illinois Statute: 625 ILCS 5/11-1414

This citation will start to become a lot more common once again with schools looking to be back in full swing for Fall 2021.  Here’s what you need to know to avoid being issued this citation.

The Law

The school bus driver is required to extend the stop signal arm and activate visual signals once they come to a complete stop.  The stop arm and visual signals shall be turned off before the school bus is place in motion again.  Every driver of a vehicle is required to stop from every direction if these signals are activated.

The drivers of stopped vehicles cannot proceed until either the school bus resumes motion OR drivers are signaled by the school bus driver to proceed OR the visual signals are no longer activated.

There is one exception:

Drivers of vehicles on a 4 lane road with at least two lanes in each direction do not need to stop when the school bus is going the opposite direction.

Penalties

Rear view of a stopped bright yellow school bus

You cannot receive court supervision if you plead guilty or are found guilty of this offense.  This means the judge can only give you a conviction if you are guilty of passing a school bus when it is loading or unloading.

1st offense

Mandatory fine of $300 plus court costs

The Secretary of State shall suspend your license for 3 months

2nd Offense within 5 years

Mandatory fine of $1,000 plus court costs

The Secretary of State shall suspend your license for 1 year

Can you get a permit to drive if you are suspended for this charge?

Yes, driving relief is available from the Secretary of State in the form of a Restricted Driving Permit, which would allow you to drive to and from work.  You can obtain this relief through an informal hearing process and should contact Dan if you have been suspended for this offense.