School will be back in session very soon in Indiana, so it's time for the annual reminder of when you are legally supposed to stop for school buses in the state.

Many students in Indiana will be returning to school within the next couple of weeks.  That means you will be seeing those school buses full of kids on the roadways. So it's a good time to get a little refresher when it comes to the rules of the road with school buses. This is not only for the kids' safety but for your own too.

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First off, it is ILLEGAL to run a school bus stop sign. Sometimes kids coming off the bus will cross in front of it and cross the street, that stop sign is there so all traffic stops to keep the kids safe. If you run the stop sign, you risk the chance of putting a child in danger and getting yourself a ticket. However, there ARE times when you can proceed past a school bus with its stop sign out in Indiana. So, that's why now is a good time to tell you when you are legally supposed to stop for school buses and when you don't.

Stop Sign on School Bus
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When You Should and Shouldn't Stop for School Buses in Indiana

It should be understood by now that when you see a school bus with the stop sign out, you should stop and wait. However, each year many people fail to pay attention and fly by these school buses. Indiana State Police Sargent Todd Ringle took to Twitter (or "X" as it's now called) a few years back to give you a friendly reminder about those school bus stop signs. To sum it up, there are three different situations for school bus stop signs.

1. Two Lane Roads

Vehicles traveling in both directions MUST stop for school buses.

2. Multi-Lane Paved Across Roads

Vehicles traveling in both directions MUST stop for school buses.

3. Divided Highway with a Barrier or an Unpaived Median

Vehicles behind the bus MUST stop. Vehicles traveling in the opposite direction can proceed past the bus with caution.

Don't Forget School Zone Speed Limits!

Another thing to remember when driving during school hours is to slow down in school zones. The speed limit in a school zone is often reduced significantly during school hours or when children are present. Typically, those speed limits are 20 miles per hour and the school zones are marked with signs along the road. Law Enforcement Officers will be increasing patrols in school zones throughout Indiana to make sure that drivers abide by the school zone speed limit.

So remember, slow down, watch for children, and stop for school buses. Again, these are all things that every driver should know by now. However, we often hear of cases where drivers fail to do these things. Be smart out there! Don't be one of those drivers.

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