Drivers who fail to stop for a school bus that is loading or unloading students face a greater chance of being pulled over this week.
Troopers from the N.C. Highway Patrol will be more aggressive about enforcing the law against passing a bus that has the stop arm extended.
Operation Stop Arm started Monday and continues through Friday, according to the Highway Patrol. The goal is to reduce traffic violations and school bus collisions in school zones.
Troopers will use marked and unmarked vehicles as they step up patrols in school zones. Operation Stop Arm will also bring more aggressive enforcement of other traffic violations, such as speeding in school zones.
More than 800,000 N.C. students ride school buses. On average, nearly 3,000 drivers put children’s lives at risk by failing to stop for a school bus as students board or exit.
Passing a stopped school bus is a misdemeanor that can bring a minimum fine of $500 and up to five points on a driver’s license. A driver who strikes someone while passing a stopped school bus could face felony charges and a minimum fine of $1,250 or a minimum fine of $2,500 if someone is killed.
Karen Sullivan: 704-358-5532, @Sullivan_kms