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School Buses

Old 08-30-14, 08:17 AM
  #1  
mzirger726
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School Buses

It's back to school time and the big yellow buses are back on the road. The other day I cam up on one that was going the opposite direction as me, it was stopped had the stop sign out and red lights flashing. I came to a stop and waited just as if I were in a car. To my surprise I saw the bus driver wave at me to go on. I started pedaling with her permission. So my question to all of you is "Do you stop for school buses?" Does it matter to you if it's going the same way as you or the opposite direction? Has anyone ever gotten a ticket for passing one on their bicycle? Just wondering.
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Old 08-30-14, 08:21 AM
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If I came up on one stopped, lights flashing, stop sign out, heck yes I would stop. Wouldn't matter what direction either were going.
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Old 08-30-14, 08:30 AM
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I'm for stopping. But I stop for red lights too. Most of the others riding bicycles (and e-bikes) here probably think me odd.
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Old 08-30-14, 08:42 AM
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Yes, I stop, it's the law. I'd hate to run into/over a little kid, since I weigh 250 lbs + 35 lbs bike = 285 lbs . So serious injury/death could result and did I mention IT'S THE LAW.......
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Old 08-30-14, 08:44 AM
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You stop.

Period.

Kids getting on and off a school bus will run right across the road without looking, from just about anywhere.

Anyone who feels you're odd for doing so is an idiot.
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Old 08-30-14, 08:49 AM
  #6  
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I agree, always stop even if the bus driver is waving. Not only because the kids might be coming from anywhere, but what will you do if you're in the middle of passing and the driver starts up and lumbers left? You're squeezed while the cars behind are impatient to get around, and might not see your or care if they do.
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Old 08-30-14, 08:59 AM
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The OP mentioned he was going the opposite direction,

If there's any sort of physical barrier between the lanes, or median then opposing traffic isn't required to stop. Some states also allow opposing traffic to continue if the road is more than one lane in each direction, and/or has a dividing turn lane,

Same direction all types of vehicles must stop under all circumstances.

Check your states laws.

Last edited by kickstart; 08-30-14 at 09:16 AM.
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Old 08-30-14, 09:00 AM
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I would stop. Kids are my retirement financeers.
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Old 08-30-14, 09:02 AM
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I didn't stop when I was on the MUP but I did stop when I was on the road. Then a cyclist passed me while I was stopped.
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Old 08-30-14, 12:07 PM
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I just slow down and pass at a walking pace. I almost hit a kid the other day. I had to swerve all the way across the lane but the little bugger was still able to get away.
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Old 08-30-14, 12:28 PM
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NYS is a stop in both directions state. I once asked a local stop if bicycles also had to stop for school buses. He said he supposed so, but suggested that if I didn't I should pass carefully and not hit any kids, and he'd have no reason to look it up.

The law is stop, the reality is that bicycles are very different than cars, so you might proceed with due caution.
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Old 08-30-14, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
NYS is a stop in both directions state. I once asked a local stop if bicycles also had to stop for school buses. He said he supposed so, but suggested that if I didn't I should pass carefully and not hit any kids, and he'd have no reason to look it up.

The law is stop, the reality is that bicycles are very different than cars, so you might proceed with due caution.
Or Not:

NY State law: "§ 1231. Traffic laws apply to persons riding bicycles or skating or gliding on in-line skates. Every person riding a bicycle or skating or gliding on in-line skates upon a roadway shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle by this title, except as to special regulations in this article and except as to those provisions of this title which by their nature can have no application."
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Old 08-30-14, 02:12 PM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by atbman View Post
Or Not:

NY State law: "§ 1231. .....
Or not which. That bicycles are not covered by the stop for school buses law? Or that bicycles are not in reality different than cars (though treated similarly by the law)?
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Old 08-30-14, 02:38 PM
  #14  
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Massachusetts motor vehicles must stop for a School Bus. Bicycles don't have to stop.

I stop.

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Old 08-30-14, 07:17 PM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by atbman View Post
Or Not:

NY State law: "§ 1231. Traffic laws apply to persons riding bicycles or skating or gliding on in-line skates. Every person riding a bicycle or skating or gliding on in-line skates upon a roadway shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle by this title, except as to special regulations in this article and except as to those provisions of this title which by their nature can have no application."
Well, there you go, at the beginning of the bold. "Upon a roadway...." Just take the shoulder and you're no longer on the roadway.

I was riding my country roads this spring and I always seemed to meet my daughter's bus after it dropped her off and circled around from the other direction. I was on basically a single lane back country road when I saw it coming in my mirror. I pulled off at a driveway to allow it past. It stopped at this driveway to let 2 girls off. I waited and turned out that the bus waited the whole time with its lights on for the girls to walk the 400ish foot driveway and into the house. It was frustrating waiting that ling, but had I gone, I would have just had to pull off and stop to let it go by again anyways.
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Old 08-30-14, 08:28 PM
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Originally Posted by mrodgers View Post
Well, there you go, at the beginning of the bold. "Upon a roadway...." Just take the shoulder and you're no longer on the roadway.
You might want to research that a little closer. While some states do use "roadway" to define the travel lane, most consider traffic laws to apply to the entire accessible right of way.
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Old 08-30-14, 08:43 PM
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It also may depend on the bus driver. One of the local bus drivers is also the Drivers Ed instructor(can't get much better, really) and I know to wait for her signal. If I need to pass by or cross, she'll signal whan the path is clear.
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Old 08-30-14, 09:26 PM
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Originally Posted by alaskanb3arcub View Post
It also may depend on the bus driver. One of the local bus drivers is also the Drivers Ed instructor(can't get much better, really) and I know to wait for her signal. If I need to pass by or cross, she'll signal whan the path is clear.
Why not just walk your bike till you're clear of the bus? Even if the bus driver waves an all-clear, there's always a possibility of a mistake or miscommunication. If you hit a kid she didn't realize was there, who's at fault would be secondary.
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Old 08-30-14, 09:28 PM
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I stop as well. I usually get waved through though.
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Old 08-31-14, 01:28 AM
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For safety of other bystanders, I stop when buses are loading and off-loading. You never know if a kid is about to dart across the road to catch the bus.
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Old 08-31-14, 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by mrodgers View Post
Well, there you go, at the beginning of the bold. "Upon a roadway...." Just take the shoulder and you're no longer on the roadway.

I was riding my country roads this spring and I always seemed to meet my daughter's bus after it dropped her off and circled around from the other direction. I was on basically a single lane back country road when I saw it coming in my mirror. I pulled off at a driveway to allow it past. It stopped at this driveway to let 2 girls off. I waited and turned out that the bus waited the whole time with its lights on for the girls to walk the 400ish foot driveway and into the house. It was frustrating waiting that ling, but had I gone, I would have just had to pull off and stop to let it go by again anyways.
I take your point about the roadway/shoulder business, but I wonder what a court would make of a rider who overtook a school bus by moving onto the shoulder and ran into a child who lived up a farm track on the other side of the shoulder? Had a quick look at a number of state laws and they all require a driver of a vehicle (only Colorado of the ones I looked at refers specifically to "driver of a motor vehicle") to stop behind the bus when the appropriate signals are on.

I suspect the "shoulder's not a part of the roadway" argument might receive pretty short shrift in the case of a collision with a child.
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Old 08-31-14, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
Or not which. That bicycles are not covered by the stop for school buses law? Or that bicycles are not in reality different than cars (though treated similarly by the law)?
Perhaps I wasn't as clear as I thought. I was making the point that, since all the state laws I've looked at (not all, by any means) refer to "the driver of a vehicle" or some very similar form of words and since cyclists are also regarded as having the rights and the duties of a motorist, then, clearly, if the law requires the driver of a vehicle to stop, then cyclists are bound by the same rule
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Old 08-31-14, 01:36 PM
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Originally Posted by atbman View Post
Perhaps I wasn't as clear as I thought. I was making the point that, since all the state laws I've looked at (not all, by any means) refer to "the driver of a vehicle" or some very similar form of words and since cyclists are also regarded as having the rights and the duties of a motorist, then, clearly, if the law requires the driver of a vehicle to stop, then cyclists are bound by the same rule
No dispute there. I thought I was clear when I made the distinction between the law and reality, "The law is stop...."

When lawmakers write laws they need to make clear, enforceable distinctions between what is legal and what isn't. If it were possible to write a law that required passing school buses at speeds consistent with stopping distance and sight lines to prevent accidents they might have, but that would be impossible to enforce.

Of course they could have written in an exception for bicycles, but they either didn't think about it or felt that might invite recklessness.

So the law is what it is, a black and white rule, but reality is grayer.

Unlike cars, bicycles occupy narrow lines and can operate in crowded areas because the speeds, maneuverability and sight lines make it possible. For example, it would be perfectly safe and legal to dismount and walk my bike past the stopped bus. Then pushing a bit, I could safely (but not legally) ride past at walking speed, or slightly above.

As I said, there's the law, and there's the reality, and passing a stopped bus on a bicycle at appropriately low speed is safe, though not legal. OTOH- as my officer friend pointed out, it would not become an issue unless I hit a kid.
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Old 08-31-14, 06:08 PM
  #24  
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You "it's the law" folk crack me up. How hard is it to roll through at ~7 mph without hitting a child? Jeebus.
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Old 08-31-14, 06:36 PM
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It's not the law here. I can blow through a stopped school bus - legally - on my bicycle at >20 mph.

But how hard is it to wait for a few children? (Too hard for you I guess.)

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