St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office Major John Kahl spoke with public school bus drivers this morning as St. Mary Parish Schools gear up for the start of a new school year. As the first person many students see at the start of their day, bus drivers are in a unique position to set the tone for a positive, productive school day. Being responsible for the care and custody of children, school bus drivers must keep their eyes on the road, operating their vehicles safely while simultaneously maintaining peace and order on the bus; often with 30 or more students on board. Kahl's presentation focused on laws that bus drivers must adhere to as well as laws that protect them. It is against Louisiana Law for a school bus driver to use a mobile phone while operating a bus unless they are contacting first responders. Another Louisiana Law gives bus drivers the same protection that applies to school teachers regarding assault.
School starts on August 8th here in St. Mary Parish. Sheriff Mark Hebert reminds all drivers to be mindful of school related traffic laws. All vehicles are required to stop no less than 30 feet from a school bus that is picking up or dropping off students along a bus route. School bus drivers activate visual signals such as lights or stop signs to let other motorists know they are stopping. Vehicles may not proceed until the school bus resumes motion. Drivers should adhere to the posted speed limits in school zones during posted hours. Also, drivers are not allowed to pass other vehicles in a school zone when the zone is in effect. Lastly, cell phone use is prohibited in active school zones with the exception of contacting emergency services.
St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office
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