Like many professions, people typically choose a career because they enjoy the work rather than solely for financial gain. This mindset holds especially true when discussing those that have careers all with one employer.
Certainly, someone who bounces around from employer to employer might be doing so because each subsequent job pays more money. For someone who works in the school district, they make the commitment to work there for many, many years.
One of the main reasons for staying employed in a city or state job for longevity is because of the benefits offered after they retire from the position. One of the biggest benefits for these types of jobs is a pension which is when a percentage of the salary is paid to the former employee even after they retire.
We discuss this to show that people who work in these types of jobs are very serious about them and pursue these types of opportunities not only for the benefits but because they are passionate about what they do.
School bus drivers can be employed by school districts and definitely fall into this category.
They are passionate about the kids they transport to and from school and also get to know the pupils throughout the years where they can see them grow and increase their stature.
No doubt some of the kids are probably annoying to the drivers but deep down the driver of the bus cares about them and that is why they got into the career as a bus driver in the first place.
As we have laid out here, bus drivers care about the children they drive around and are passionate about what they do day in and day out. So, it should be no surprise that they do not take lightly to other drivers not following rules of the road, especially so in a school zone where students are present and much more vulnerable.
One of the most egregious mistakes a driver can make in a school zone is not stopping when instructed to do so. This can be extremely dangerous and there is actually a Nevada Revised Statute (NRS) that empowers a school bus driver to report a driver doing that.
The Power Granted to School Bus Drivers
The NRS is 484B.357 and is titled:
Report by driver of school bus of failure of driver of vehicle to stop; submission of report to school district and Department; provision of notice to owner of vehicle.
The Clark County School District (CCSD) is one of the largest school districts in the country and therefore should be no surprise that they are one of the largest employers in the state of Nevada. It is estimated that there are approximately 40,000 employees of CCSD. Not all of those are school teachers as there are many logistical staff members as well, including bus drivers. The fleet of school buses in Clark County exceeds 1,600 so there are plenty of drivers out there to report on those not stopping in school zones or not making a complete stop (also known as a “California Stop”).
Adhering to traffic laws and enforcing them, especially in school zones, is extremely important for the safety of the students. Many of these kids are just excited to be outside after a long day in the classroom and are not paying attention to their surroundings, making them more susceptible to running in front of a car and getting hit.
For the same reasons, there are more speed bumps and lower speed limits in school zones, there are also more stop signs. If a school bus driver sees you not stopping when you are supposed to and endangering kids in the area (some of which they know personally and have a true affinity for) they will want to see you get punished so that you can change your behavior in the future. With NRS 484B.357 they can do that by reporting you (the Clark County School District even has their own police force on staff).
There are two subpoints to the statute that really spell out how it all works.
The Driver May File a Report of a Violation
The first point states:
1. The driver of a school bus who observes a violation of NRS 484B.353 may prepare a report of the violation.
The report must be signed by the driver and include:
(a) The date, time and approximate location of the violation;
(b) The number and state of issuance of the license plate of the vehicle whose driver committed the violation; and
(c) An identification of the vehicle by type and color.
These are all pretty basic for any type of report. If you are ever cited a ticket for violating the statutes pertaining to passing school buses or coming to a stop and/or were reported by a school bus driver then you need to reach out to Ticket Busters.
Our office can assist you and we will investigate whether or not you truly were at fault. Another defense that can be used is to understand if the bus driver’s report was complete and accurate. This would include the adjectives described within the statute and to ensure that the driver signed it.
In the verbiage above, it also referenced another statute. NRS 484B.353 is fairly long but we provided an excerpt below about the main reference of that statute in regards to the operator of a bus reporting another driver:
“…the driver of any vehicle, when meeting or overtaking, from either direction, any school bus, equipped with signs and signals required by law, which has stopped to receive or discharge any pupil and is displaying a flashing red light signal visible from the front and rear, shall bring the vehicle to an immediate stop and shall not attempt to overtake or proceed past the school bus until the flashing red signal ceases operation.”
Guidance on Reporting the Violation
The second and last subpoint to this article references the timeline that must be followed in the case a school bus driver reports another driver for not stopping properly:
2. The driver of a school bus who prepares a report pursuant to subsection 1 shall, within 2 working days after the violation, send the report to the superintendent of the school district and a copy to the Department, which shall thereupon mail to the last known registered owner of the vehicle a notice containing:
(a) The information included in the report;
(b) The provisions of NRS 484B.353; and
(c) An explanation that the notice is not a citation but a warning of the seriousness of the violation.
Failing to Stop and Being Reported by a School Bus Driver
If you do get a ticket by a traffic officer for failing to stop or blowing pass a school bus when not allowed, then you can expect a misdemeanor on your record as well as fines and demerit points. If you do not have a habit of violating this law and it is your first time then the fine will likely range between $250 and $500.
A second time offense (or more), especially within the same year, the fines can be higher.
Four demerit points are pretty much the norm for this type of violation.
Ticket Busters located in downtown Las Vegas can help you fight these charges.
We are easy to get a hold of so call, email or walk in to our office and we will get started right away on your case.
These rules involving school buses, school zones and stopping may seem harsh but we all must remember that they were drawn up by lawmakers with the safety of our children in mind.
School children, especially after a long day of being cooped up in a classroom do not always act they way we as adults anticipate them to do which is why we all need to drive slow in school zones, be cognizant of our surroundings and adhere to all stop signs.
When we approach a bus that is stopped with the stop signs out, we as drivers in southern Nevada need to wait until the stop sign is closed and the bus begins to move again before we do the same.
Moving our vehicle sooner than that does not gain us anything. Getting back on our way 30 seconds sooner will not make any difference in regards to us reaching our destination.
NRS 484B.353 is all about the safety and concern for the school children of Nevada and NRS 484B.357, which allows bus drivers to report on private citizens for violating the law is also for the safety and concern of children.
We should all challenge ourselves to drive slower on the roads of Las Vegas and Henderson but especially so in a school zone.
If you find yourself on the other side of that equation and get a traffic ticket for not stopping or passing a bus then contact Ticket Busters for help.