Motorists continue to pass stopped school buses in greater numbers year over year, according to the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services (NASDPTS). The association released the results of its 11th survey, in which 94,581 school bus drivers in 33 states reported that 62,482 vehicles passed their buses illegally during a single measurement day in the 2022-2023 school year.
Projected across a 180-day school year, NASDPTS officials estimate that it would amount to 43.5 million violations per year among the motoring public. That's a more than 4% increase over last year's projected 41.8 million.
Said Mike Simmons, NASDPTS president: "The problem of illegally passing stopped school buses continues to increase. We at (NASDPTS) hope the results of this survey remind all motorists to pay attention to the yellow school bus, to follow the laws in their state, and stop to allow for the safe loading and unloading of each school bus. We encourage each state to use this information to bring attention to this critical safety issue and engage all resources necessary to ensure each child is protected."
This survey has been conducted annually since 2011, with the exception of 2020 and 2021 when the survey was not conducted due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting school closures across the country. The survey results have brought greater attention by state and federal policy makers to the need for greater safety countermeasures. In recent years, several states have increased penalties for violations, authorized the use of photo evidence for issuing citations, or enacted other measures designed to deter this dangerous practice.
Complete information on the project, including the detailed results from the 2023 survey, and prior years, can be found at https://www.nasdpts.org/stop-arm-violations.