School is about to be back in session in East Texas. Some private schools have already started classes. So that means that school zones will be in effect and school buses will picking those children up.

The time has come to brush up on school zone and school bus rules.

It can be frustrating to get stuck behind a school bus when we're running late for work. But remember, those buses are transporting children. There will be children waiting by the road to get on. Be safe and smart when driving by a school bus.

The National Safety Council lists these precautions when behind a bus.

  • Never pass a bus from behind – or from either direction if you're on an undivided road – if it is stopped to load or unload children
  • If the yellow or red lights are flashing and the stop arm is extended, traffic must stop
  • The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus
  • Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks

It is illegal to pass a school bus that is stopped with the red lights flashing. If you are caught, you will face some serious fines and, most importantly, you could put the children getting on or off the bus in danger.

School zones will start flashing, as well. Slow down to the posted speed limit when the lights are flashing. It is also illegal to be on your phone while in an activated school zone. Traffic fines also increase in a school zone or your license could be suspended depending on the infraction.

In other, words, slow down and pay attention as the kids head back to school. The following video from 2013 gives some good advice on school bus safety.