(WETM) – Students and family members are in back-to-school mode as the 2023-2024 school year kicks off this week. With students returning to the classrooms, we will see a lot more school buses on the roads. It is important that drivers remember the laws associated with school bus safety.

When a school bus has stopped and has red flashing lights, it means students will either be entering or exiting the vehicle. Drivers must come to a complete stop and wait until the flashing lights turn off and the bus begins motion again.

It is also important to remember that when a bus stops and flashes its red lights, both directions of traffic must come to a stop as well. This includes a school bus that is stopped on a two-lane road, multi-lane highways, or on a divided highway.

Failure to stop when approaching a school bus can leave you with a ticket as high as $450. Besides the hefty fine, 5 points are also put onto your drivers license.

Bill Schrom, Chemung County Sheriff, says that paying close attention to your surroundings can ensure the safety of students returning to school.

“People just need to remember to focus on the safety of the students, remember that school is back in session. Certainly be patient, People have to get on and off the bus so just be patient and wait until the flashing lights are off and you should be good to go.”