Monday, August 27, 2012

Pittsburgh police plan extra traffic patrols as school starts - Pittsburgh Post Gazette

Pittsburgh police will start the school year Thursday with a two-week crackdown on violations of traffic laws related to school zones and buses.

The "Back to School Highway Safety Initiative" will deploy motorcycle and traffic officers "in full force" to monitor compliance with 15 mph school zone speed limits and the state law requiring vehicles to stop for school buses with their red lights flashing, spokeswoman Diane Richard said in a press release.

"Our message is simple -- we will do everything possible to help protect our children. If you drive past a stopped school bus while they are loading and unloading or speed in a school zone, you will be cited," said Cmdr. Scott Schubert. "We will have additional unmarked cars, motorcycles, and marked police cars throughout the City of Pittsburgh, looking for people who violate the school bus stopping law or those who speed in school zones."

The law requires drivers to stop at least 10 feet from buses that have lights flashing or a stop arm extended, including those coming in the opposite direction if there is no physical division in the road such as a median or guide rail. All traffic approaching an intersection where a bus is loading or unloading must stop.

Violations can bring a 60-day driver's license suspension, five points and a $250 fine.

Police also will issue citations based on information from crossing guards, bus drivers and other school officials, Cmdr. Schubert said.

Jon Schmitz: jschmitz@post-gazette.com

More details in tomorrow's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

or 412-263-1868.

First published on August 27, 2012 at 11:36 am

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