March 11, 2016 - 4:30 PM
KAMLOOPS - The fines handed drivers for not respecting the rules of the road around school buses are being reviewed by the province.
Minister of Transportation Todd Stone says in a media release changes to fines for not stopping when a school bus has stopped will likely occur before the end of the school year.
“I have heard from school bus drivers, trustees and parents that the current penalty - a $167-fine and three demerit points - is not enough to deter drivers,” Stone says in the release.
School District 73 board was part of the call for review, as it sent a letter to the ministry in October 2015. Supt. Karl deBruijn says the board requested a review or an increase in penalties for drivers who don’t stop for busses.
“Cars are supposed to stop on both sides of the bus” he says. “It’s a real safety issue, not just in our district, but across the province.”
deBruijn says the concern comes when the bus is stopped and children are crossing the street from behind the bus, a blind spot for drivers coming from the opposite direction.
“When our drivers stop and put up that stop sign so students can cross, their lives are at risk,” he says.
deBruijn says school district buses cover 9,000 kilometres in a day carrying 4,000 students.
In a letter to the school board Stone says local police would welcome input from the board as to where the issue has been noticed. He writes the issue will be taken to the B.C. Association of Chiefs of Police for input on how fines may affect the issue.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016