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Victoria
04-14-2011, 08:06 AM
What kind of evil jackass runs a school bus stop sign? I was loading kids this morning on a rural road, and the guy behind me decides to go around. My lights are flashing, my stop sign is out and blinking, and I'm honking at this dickhead like a mad woman. My kids are crossing the street, for cripes sake, and he just whips around me! I got his plate number, make and model, and his description. I hope his five minutes were worth the $250 fine he's gonna get. God...if he would have hit one of my kids... His five minutes could have cost a life. Every life on that bus is my responsibility. That thought is with me every second I'm behind the wheel, and I take my job very seriously. I would have killed him. Right there in the street. Sorry, I just needed to get that out.

backslashbaby
04-14-2011, 09:09 AM
OMG! That is so scary. We had a couple of bad accidents with that here. Unfortunately, the drivers were illegal immigrants. They didn't really have drivers' licenses and didn't know the local laws (but still drove!) :(

benbradley
04-14-2011, 09:42 AM
You SHOULD shoot such people (with a flipcam). Put it on YouTube with the date, license number and "passing stopped school bus as children are crossing street" as the title. Email the URL to the local police.

Seriously, flipcams are cheap thesedays.

Pyrohawk
04-14-2011, 10:35 AM
My mom is a bus driver.... she says this happens all the time. It makes her so mad! It makes her especially mad that even when she gets the make and licence plate the police won't do anything about it.


I probably shouldn't share this story but I will. I ran a bus light one time on accident. I was going the other way and the sign was out and flashing and I went right through it. It wasn't on purpose I just didn't even think about it.... it was the day I got my licence. My friend who was riding with me remarked "that was ballsy", I said "what was?" He was like, "oh just running through that bus stop sign, I didn't think you were gonna do it". I looked in my mirror and was shocked.... how did I not even see a whole school bus with flashing lights?? My friend just thought it was funny... I didn't.

JoeEkaitis
04-14-2011, 04:52 PM
Here in California, a driver may make a right turn on a red light AFTER the following:

1. Stop behind the limit line or outside the clearly marked crosswalk.

2. Signal.

3. Yield right of way to vehicles and pedestrians who have the right of way.

More often, a conga line of vehicles blows through the red light at 20 to 30 miles an hour, i.e.: fast enough to maim or kill a pedestrian, keeping any pedestrians who have the WALK or "walking man" signal on the curb.

Alpha Echo
04-14-2011, 05:07 PM
Wow! You know, I'll admit sometimes, especially when you're running late, and you get behind a school bus that stops 10 times within a half mile, it's annoying as hell.

But I'd never even think about going around the bus! There are kids getting off or on, and they aren't looking b/c it's supposed to be safe! The bus stops traffic so the kids can cross.

What a selfish, thoughtless prick. Let us know if anything comes of it.

brainstorm77
04-14-2011, 05:12 PM
That's been a HUGE issue where I live. The school boards are now installing cameras on the outside of each bus to try and combat it.

pangalactic
04-14-2011, 05:14 PM
Here in California, a driver may make a right turn on a red light AFTER the following:

1. Stop behind the limit line or outside the clearly marked crosswalk.

2. Signal.

3. Yield right of way to vehicles and pedestrians who have the right of way.

More often, a conga line of vehicles blows through the red light at 20 to 30 miles an hour, i.e.: fast enough to maim or kill a pedestrian, keeping any pedestrians who have the WALK or "walking man" signal on the curb.

I'd never heard of that before, until I went out to San Diego a couple of years ago. I learned pretty quickly that a WALK signal doesn't always mean what it says.

bluntforcetrauma
04-14-2011, 07:50 PM
Man, Victoria, just reading that scared the hell out of me.

Victoria
04-15-2011, 02:47 AM
[QUOTE=Alpha Echo;6033492]Wow! You know, I'll admit sometimes, especially when you're running late, and you get behind a school bus that stops 10 times within a half mile, it's annoying as hell.
UOTE]

Yeah, just chalk it up to bad timing and try to be patient. I do my best to hurry my kids into their seats if we're holding up traffic, but I have one or two that just slug along. Little turds.

YAwriter72
04-15-2011, 03:36 AM
Most buses up here pull over if they're on a pick up route so cars can go by them. My aunt got reamed by a bus driver (She's a rural route mailperson) for driving around the bus when it was stopped, lights off, in someones driveway after all the kids got off.

I was hit by a car when I was 8, by someone who drove right on past when the bus had stopped and was flashing lights.

GailD
04-15-2011, 04:12 AM
I learned fast about school busses in the US. On a visit there last year I was driving a rental and just getting the hang of driving on the wrong side of the road - sorry, thats the right side in the US. (We drive on the left here.)

Fortunately I had a friend with me or I would have overtaken a school bus without even thinking about it. (We don't have school buses or special stops for school buses here.) I had already put the indicator on and was starting to swing out when she screamed stop stop stop. I got a huge fright and slammed on anchors. She then explained the rule.

They should give out information like that at car rental places at airports. The people at Cleveland airport just handed me the keys and said 'have a nice day'.

bettielee
04-15-2011, 05:45 AM
will somebody please, please, think of the children?

^sorry, someone had to say it

But omg! What a dirtbag! What part of schoolbus did this moron not understand?!

I hate people. I also hate the jackass that swerved around me to make it to the redlight 2 seconds before I did. I hate all those people.

bettielee
04-15-2011, 05:45 AM
That's been a HUGE issue where I live. The school boards are now installing cameras on the outside of each bus to try and combat it.

this is an awesome idea!

brainstorm77
04-15-2011, 06:24 AM
this is an awesome idea!

I agree. They have too, nothing else is working.

Victoria
04-15-2011, 07:13 AM
That's been a HUGE issue where I live. The school boards are now installing cameras on the outside of each bus to try and combat it.

Heck, we just got cameras inside the busses. I don't think exterior cameras are in the budget, but they would be great. My husband is a deputy, and his car has plate scanners on it. Now that would be awesome!

backslashbaby
04-15-2011, 11:27 AM
I learned fast about school busses in the US. On a visit there last year I was driving a rental and just getting the hang of driving on the wrong side of the road - sorry, thats the right side in the US. (We drive on the left here.)

Fortunately I had a friend with me or I would have overtaken a school bus without even thinking about it. (We don't have school buses or special stops for school buses here.) I had already put the indicator on and was starting to swing out when she screamed stop stop stop. I got a huge fright and slammed on anchors. She then explained the rule.

They should give out information like that at car rental places at airports. The people at Cleveland airport just handed me the keys and said 'have a nice day'.

That's so awful that they don't! There's not really all that much to know; they could use the same pamphlets we get to take the driver's test, for that matter.

strictlytopsecret
04-15-2011, 06:03 PM
I hope his five minutes were worth the $250 fine he's gonna get

Surely the police or the courts would require actual evidence (more than the word of another driver) to issue a ticket? And to whom would you issue the ticket? The vehicle owner of record?

If a ticket can be issued based solely on the word of a fellow driver (school bus or otherwise), that sets rather a sticky precedent.

~STS~

Victoria
04-15-2011, 06:14 PM
Surely the police or the courts would require actual evidence (more than the word of another driver) to issue a ticket? And to whom would you issue the ticket? The vehicle owner of record?

If a ticket can be issued based solely on the word of a fellow driver (school bus or otherwise), that sets rather a sticky precedent.

~STS~

If the bus driver can make a positive ID in court, yes, it is enough. Also, there were several of my kids who are old enough to bear witness as well. Tickets are issued based on witness accounts of other drivers all the time. This is nothing new.

strictlytopsecret
04-15-2011, 06:19 PM
If the bus driver can make a positive ID in court, yes, it is enough. Also, there were several of my kids who are old enough to bear witness as well. Tickets are issued based on witness accounts of other drivers all the time. This is nothing new.

Ah. So a ticket would NOT be issued without a judge making the decision.

That makes much more sense.

~STS~

Yeshanu
04-15-2011, 06:37 PM
I also hate the jackass that swerved around me to make it to the redlight 2 seconds before I did.

Hate is too strong a word for me, but yeah, I know where you're coming from on this.

I like the idea of cameras on the outside of the bus to ID the car. As for who was the driver, it matters not. The owner of record bears some responsibility for lending out the car to a nutjob, IMO.

Just looked up on the net: Ontario actually has a form for school bus drivers to fill out, and protocol for other drivers who see it happen that might be useful in other jurisdictions as well. (Lots of useful questions to answer.)

And fight for stronger penalties. $250 is chicken shit. Here's the Ontario penalties:


Failing to Properly Stop for a School Bus with Lights Flashing- Subsection 175 (11) & (12) (http://www.e-laws.gov.on.ca/html/statutes/english/elaws_statutes_90h08_e.htm#s175s11) of the HTA = $490 fine, up to a $2,000 fine. If you are convicted the first time and you are charged and convicted again, expect a hefty fine of anywhere between $1,000.00 and $4,000, an accumulation of an additional six (6) demerit points and in addition, possible incarceration for a period not to exceed six (6) months.That's jail time for repeat offenders folks, and I may be wrong, but 6 demerits can mean suspension of your license for a period of time.

ETA: Found this at the bottom of the page after I'd finished this post:


Registered owners of vehicles can be charged if their vehicle illegally passes a school bus that is stopped with its red lights flashing.

So yeah. Make sure you're not lending your car to a douchebag. You're still responsible. (And that means rental companies can be charged, too, I'd think. So they have a legal duty to explain the rules to foreign drivers.)

strictlytopsecret
04-15-2011, 07:00 PM
Interesting.

So are you saying that in Ontario, a driver who did not commit a crime (in this case, pass a school bus with its lights flashing) can be convicted of that crime nonetheless? Surely there is more to it than that.

How is it a crime to fail to predict the future behavior of a driver to whom you lend or rent a car?

What a terrifying prospect.

~STS~

Yeshanu
04-15-2011, 07:15 PM
Interesting.

So are you saying that in Ontario, a driver who did not commit a crime (in this case, pass a school bus with its lights flashing) can be convicted of that crime nonetheless? Surely there is more to it than that.

How is it a crime to fail to predict the future behavior of a driver to whom you lend or rent a car?

What a terrifying prospect.

~STS~

It's about responsibility. I wouldn't lend my car to anyone I didn't know really well, and yeah, if I lent out a piece of machinery that's potentially as lethal as a gun (or more so, given that it can do mass damage), then I do bear some responsibility. If you lend to someone who's not going to own up to what they did while they were driving your car, that leaves you on the hook.

As for rental companies, if you read the contract you sign, you'd end up being dinged for any fines accrued during your rental.

It's rather like the tolls on the one toll highway we have in Ontario. We don't have toll booths--the cameras just take a picture of your license plate, and the owner is billed.

I don't really find it terrifying at all. What I find terrifying is the prospect that someone could potentially get away with murder because the state won't prosecute because the car "might" have been borrowed. Think about it--the whole reason why folks in the States can do this and get away with it is that they know that unless an officer of the law is right there to stop them, positive identification can't be made, and they can't be convicted. All they have to do is say, "I think I loaned my car to so-and-so that day," and they're off the hook.

I don't see this type of thing happen very much at all in Ontario, and I live in an area where a lot of kids take school busses.

strictlytopsecret
04-15-2011, 07:31 PM
What I find terrifying is the prospect that someone could potentially get away with murder because the state won't prosecute because the car "might" have been borrowed.

I suppose it boils down to this:

Which is of greater value?

Protecting the innocent (risks the guilty going unpunished)
or
Punishing the guilty (risks the innocent being punished)

~STS~

JayMan
04-15-2011, 08:23 PM
Wow, this reminds me of an incident from when I was a kid. I think I was in kindergarten or first grade. On the bus ride home, there was a stop before mine where a girl got off, and her dad waited there every day to pick her up and walk her home.

Well, one afternoon, just as she's getting off and crossing the street, some jackass who's going way too fast for such a small street drives up the road and gets into the wrong lane to go around the stopped bus. I have no idea what the girl's father's occupation was, but he had very fast reflexes.

He jumped out onto the road and pushed his daughter out of the way just as the car sped by, like something out of a movie.

Both the girl and her father were okay, and the guy in the car didn't even stop. He just drove off. Luckily, the bus driver and father both caught his plate number and reported it to the police, so the guy got what he deserved.

benbradley
04-15-2011, 09:54 PM
Interesting.

So are you saying that in Ontario, a driver who did not commit a crime (in this case, pass a school bus with its lights flashing) can be convicted of that crime nonetheless? Surely there is more to it than that.

How is it a crime to fail to predict the future behavior of a driver to whom you lend or rent a car?

What a terrifying prospect.

~STS~
It seems for "minor" crimes such as traffic citations it's "okay" that the license tag is enough evidence that it was the owner driving. Actually, I've heard about red light cameras, if an owner just goes to court and says he wasn't driving the car when it ran a red light, he can get out of it. OTOH, I got this info from this guy's radio show (http://www.handelonthelaw.com/home/TuneIn.aspx), so take it with a grain (silo) of salt.

It's about responsibility. I wouldn't lend my car to anyone I didn't know really well, and yeah, if I lent out a piece of machinery that's potentially as lethal as a gun (or more so, given that it can do mass damage), then I do bear some responsibility. If you lend to someone who's not going to own up to what they did while they were driving your car, that leaves you on the hook.

As for rental companies, if you read the contract you sign, you'd end up being dinged for any fines accrued during your rental.

It's rather like the tolls on the one toll highway we have in Ontario. We don't have toll booths--the cameras just take a picture of your license plate, and the owner is billed.

I don't really find it terrifying at all. What I find terrifying is the prospect that someone could potentially get away with murder because the state won't prosecute because the car "might" have been borrowed. Think about it--the whole reason why folks in the States can do this and get away with it is that they know that unless an officer of the law is right there to stop them, positive identification can't be made, and they can't be convicted. All they have to do is say, "I think I loaned my car to so-and-so that day," and they're off the hook.
Apparently, what the police do is very situational. If something major happens such as a child run over and the car keeps going, there's sure to be a thorough investigation of who was driving, checking alibis and such, including whose cellphone was talking to what cell tower (if a phone is on and can receive calls, it's ALWAYS talking to a nearby cell tower, and that info along with the date and time are stored in a computer somehere).

But it doesn't seem to stop many states from billing running a red light based on the camera taking a picture of the tag. It sounds to me like the police aren't very interested in prosecuting many "minor" cases (where there's a law violation, but no one got hurt) where only civilians provide the info.

I suppose it boils down to this:

Which is of greater value?

Protecting the innocent (risks the guilty going unpunished)
or
Punishing the guilty (risks the innocent being punished)

~STS~
I heard of this before, so I researched it. The question has been discussed since the Old Testament:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackstone%27s_formulation
Western Law appears based on protecting the innocent (and that seems traceable to the OT quote), though again that rule seems to slide with "minor" infractions such as running a red light - you're guilty until you go to court to say you're innocent.

Yeshanu
04-15-2011, 10:55 PM
First off, if you lend your car to someone who has a disrespect for the law, you're NOT innocent. You have a responsibility to protect others by not lending a lethal machine to criminals. I certainly wouldn't lend my car to anyone who I believed wouldn't obey the law to the letter.

Second, if I did by chance lend my car to someone who deliberately or unintentionally broke the law, and the police came knocking at my door, I'd tell them the name, address and phone number of the driver at the time of the incident so they could be charged. If I didn't, I should be charged for protecting a criminal.

The only way I could get out of being responsible is if the car had been taken without my permission, and at the point I realized it had been taken without permission, I should have reported it stolen.

So yes, the owner should be charged in the absence of clear information about who exactly was driving the car.

Your car, your responsibility. Accept it.

tjwriter
04-16-2011, 01:05 AM
Most buses up here pull over if they're on a pick up route so cars can go by them. My aunt got reamed by a bus driver (She's a rural route mailperson) for driving around the bus when it was stopped, lights off, in someones driveway after all the kids got off.

I was hit by a car when I was 8, by someone who drove right on past when the bus had stopped and was flashing lights.

I drive on a two lane highway that has no shoulder some days. There is nowhere for the bus to stop, except on the roadway.

I accidentally slid past one just after it turned on the red flashing lights one day, but I blame that partly on the bus driver who turned on the orange warning lights so early (where there were no houses for quite a distance) that I slowed down some trying to figure out where this bus was going to stop at, but couldn't stop when driver turned to red flashing lights and stopped all of a sudden. It was a weird situation all around.

I felt horrible, as I make it a practice to stop early and far away so that kids have plenty of safe distance.

strictlytopsecret
04-16-2011, 01:16 AM
So yes, the owner should be charged in the absence of clear information about who exactly was driving the car.

Your car, your responsibility. Accept it.

So in essence, you believe that citizen #1 (the car owner) should be responsible for the behavior of citizen #2 (an individual who drove around a school bus with its lights flashing)? Responsible to the point of accepting legal consequences for the behavior of citizen #2? That the car owner would literally be legally guilty of a crime?

And in addition to that, citizen #1 should be afforded no presumption of innocence? Citizen #1 bears the burden for proving her or she did not commit the illegal act in question?

Seriously?

And what precisely would citizen #1 be guilty OF? Failure to secure a complete psychiatric exam from the potential lendee? Failure to run a records check on his past driving history? Failure to consult the local psychic as to whether or not the lendee might do something illegal while driving the car?

What if the lendee robbed a bank? Shall we charge the car owner with armed robbery? If I lend a butcher knife to my neighbor (who assures me he needs it for dinner preparation), and the neighbor goes berserk and chops his wife's head off, do I get the electric chair -- or does he? It's the same principle.

I am a firm believer in taking responsibility for your OWN behavior - not the behavior of someone else. In the absence of a valid way to predict the future, drivers should most assuredly not be held liable for the illegal behavior of someone else who happens to be driving their car.

~STS~

Devil Ledbetter
04-16-2011, 01:51 AM
First off, if you lend your car to someone who has a disrespect for the law, you're NOT innocent. You have a responsibility to protect others by not lending a lethal machine to criminals. I certainly wouldn't lend my car to anyone who I believed wouldn't obey the law to the letter.

I was riding in my employee's car when he passed a stopped school bus with flashing lights earlier this year. He just didn't notice it. Fortunately it was on a busy road that only lets kids out on the right, but still, not cool. He didn't realize it until he asked me why people were honking at him and flipping him the bird. He felt bad about it.

But I would never call him someone who disrespects the law, or a criminal, or even someone who wouldn't obey the letter of the law.

I also wouldn't call him a dirtbag or an evil jackass, or a thoughtless, selfish prick, as others in this thread have used to describe drivers. Anyone can have an off, distracted moment. It doesn't automatically make them an asshole or a scofflaw.

That said, I'd never pass a stopped bus. I watched my 5-year-old cousin get hit by a car on the highway when I was 9. That car laid down a lot of rubber trying to stop, and it still hit her. Since I've had kids, I've found my paranoia about them crossing streets never goes away, and I know that's why.

Victoria
04-17-2011, 12:00 AM
I drive on a two lane highway that has no shoulder some days. There is nowhere for the bus to stop, except on the roadway.

I accidentally slid past one just after it turned on the red flashing lights one day, but I blame that partly on the bus driver who turned on the orange warning lights so early (where there were no houses for quite a distance) that I slowed down some trying to figure out where this bus was going to stop at, but couldn't stop when driver turned to red flashing lights and stopped all of a sudden. It was a weird situation all around.

I felt horrible, as I make it a practice to stop early and far away so that kids have plenty of safe distance.

Sounds like there was a sub-driver on that route, and he wasn't sure sure to stop. Sometimes, we have to rely on the kids to tell us, and they aren't the best direction givers. That's why keeping our route descriptions updated is so important.

Victoria
04-17-2011, 12:02 AM
I was riding in my employee's car when he passed a stopped school bus with flashing lights earlier this year. He just didn't notice it. Fortunately it was on a busy road that only lets kids out on the right, but still, not cool. He didn't realize it until he asked me why people were honking at him and flipping him the bird. He felt bad about it.

But I would never call him someone who disrespects the law, or a criminal, or even someone who wouldn't obey the letter of the law.

I also wouldn't call him a dirtbag or an evil jackass, or a thoughtless, selfish prick, as others in this thread have used to describe drivers. Anyone can have an off, distracted moment. It doesn't automatically make them an asshole or a scofflaw.

That said, I'd never pass a stopped bus. I watched my 5-year-old cousin get hit by a car on the highway when I was 9. That car laid down a lot of rubber trying to stop, and it still hit her. Since I've had kids, I've found my paranoia about them crossing streets never goes away, and I know that's why.

I understand that people get distracted, but this guy had been behind me for about two miles before he decided he'd had enough and went around FROM BEHIND. In my book, that equals evil jackass.

Satori1977
04-17-2011, 02:28 AM
Wow, that is horrible. I have seen people on the opposite side of the road keep driving, but never seen someone pass a stopped bus. Jackass isn't a bad enough word for what that guy is. I hope he does get in trouble.

BeatrixKiddo
04-17-2011, 06:27 AM
Victoria, I'm glad you got the info off the car. Good for you. (and glad the kids were ok)

Devil Ledbetter
04-17-2011, 06:54 AM
I understand that people get distracted, but this guy had been behind me for about two miles before he decided he'd had enough and went around FROM BEHIND. In my book, that equals evil jackass.Yes, that is quite different from being momentarily distracted. That's just being an impatient twerp. I'm glad he didn't run any kids over.

The Grift
04-18-2011, 08:15 PM
Traffic laws vary considerably from state to state, but if I were in charge it would work like this:

1.) It's your car, you bought it, insured it (hopefully) and are responsible for what it does. That includes you being responsible for your decision to lend it to someone else. This means that if a car registered to you is used in an illegal act, whether it be speeding, running a red light, or vehicular homicide, the cops are going to come knocking on your door.

2.) If someone else uses your car to do something illegal, Number 1 is a rebuttable presumption, but the burden of proof shifts to the owner. Your car was stolen? Produce your police report (for practical purposes, the cops would probably have that already). Lent it to someone else? Give an alibi, and a name and info of the person you loaned it to. For all intents and purposes, the government no longer has to prove it was you, you now have to prove it wasn't.

This differs from many current systems in that if you show up at court and say you weren't driving, you aren't just "off the hook." It's now your burden to tell the court who was or why you don't know. From another angle, if you don't want the fine or trouble, you have to do burn some calories in the form of getting your friend to own up. If they won't, they're not your friend anyway. Let the cops handle it.

3.) As a deterrent, this would hopefully mean two things: (a) you would be more careful about who you lend your vehicle to and (b) you would think carefully about your potential liability when you lend your car out. Now, if someone gets in a wreck in your car, you will take a hit to your insurance. The insurance companies will fight about it in court, and you'll be in the middle. That's a small deterrent, but a deterrent nonetheless.

What if you might end up in jail if you lend your car to someone who commits a crime with it and then for whatever reason refuse to rat out your friend? Well, you made that decision too. That would be a bigger deterrent. Maybe you even have a discussion with your friend beforehand. "I expect you to be responsible, and if you make any mistakes or cost me any money, it's on you."

I have a motorcycle, and I won't loan it to everybody. I won't even let people ride it under my supervision unless I have done an analysis of the situation. Do they have a license? How long have they been riding? Can they handle this type of motorcycle based on experience, physical ability, etc? What do I know about their tendency towards being careful, obeying traffic laws, etc? There are friends who I would never lend my bike too, even if they had been riding for 10 years. Because if they borrowed my bike and got seriously hurt, it wouldn't be my fault, but you better believe I would carry that guilt.

Which brings me to my next point:

4.) We're not going crazy here. If you loan your car to someone and they kill a group of perambulating nuns and that person is caught, you as the owner of the vehicle do not get penalized for lending them the car and contributing to the situation. You only get penalized if you don't give up the actual perpetrator.


That's how I would do it. The way it's actually done varies from location to location.