SUTTON, Mass. — After a school bus driver who was apparently frustrated with motorists illegally passing school buses reportedly blocked a road diagonally with her bus in response was told by police to stop, Telegram & Gazette reports.
Photos of the bus parked across the two-lane road earlier this month were posted on Facebook (see photo posted to the Sutton Police Department Facebook page below). Some people praised the driver’s actions and others questioned whether it was safe, particularly in an emergency. In the post, the police department explained that state law requires all vehicles to stop for a school bus with flashing red lights, and that the vehicles cannot proceed until the flashing lights are deactivated.
"We cannot be everywhere at once when there are school buses on the road, though we wish we could," the police department stated in the post. "It's a frustrating fact that motorists have become increasingly distracted, and at times do no obey the law regarding stopping for a school bus." The police department added in the post that although the bus blocking both lanes in the road ensures that motorists cannot pass the stopped bus, "crossing the center line could be considered a marked lanes violation, and be cited as a verbal warning, written warning or a civil fine to the driver (which he/she would have a right of appeal like any other motorist cited.)"
Police Chief Dennis J. Towle told the newspaper that it was illegal for the bus driver to block the road. Lt. David Perry told Telegram & Gazette that he had contacted the bus company and that the driver had been spoken to. Towle, however, did note that motorists “need to pay attention to school buses and stop.”