Bucks County Improperly Passing a School Bus Ticket
As Bucks County residents know, the County is the fourth largest county in the Commonwealth. Given its size, we can only imagine how many School Zones are located throughout the county. We can all agree that the safety of our children is and should be among our society's chief concerns. That is why Improperly Passing a School Bus is one of the most serious tickets issued to drivers.
This is not your average traffic ticket. Those found guilty of improperly passing a school bus face significant penalties, such as five points on your license, a sixty-day suspension of your driving privilege, and costly fines. This significant point penalty and the automatic suspension of your license are the reasons you cannot afford to fight this alone.
Understanding the Violation
In Pennsylvania, as in most states, it is a traffic offense to pass a bus if the vehicle is flashing its red lights and has its side stop sign deployed, alerting drivers to the fact that the bus is at a stop and either taking on or dropping off students. You are required to stop at least 10 feet from the vehicle. In Pennsylvania, Improper Passing of a School Bus is considered a strict liability offense. This means that your intention does not matter. Regardless whether you passed the bus on purpose or by sheer accident, passing a school bus carries the same penalties. It does not require intent as many other serious tickets like Reckless Driving do. The law also allows for bus drivers to report those who pass school buses to local law enforcement. Therefore you may be ticketed for improperly passing a school bus even if police don’t stop you then and there.
Can I Fight Something So Strict?
There are defenses to this violation. Firstly, if being reported by a bus driver, the process calls for the driver to report the Improper Passing Of A School Bus to: (1) file the report within 48 hours, (2) include identifying information - especially driver's license plate number and make/model of the vehicle, (3) record the time of the incident, and (4) identify the location of the incident.
Additionally, the law understands that there are times where coming to a stop may be worse than passing the bus. The statute allows certain exceptions to the Improper Passing Of A School Bus based on the driver’s location coupled with when the bus actually activates its red lights and extends the stop sign.
Why Do I Need an Attorney?
At The Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin, P.C our experienced Bucks County attorneys have handled all types of school bus tickets from Churchville to Maple Shade and everywhere in between at both the Magisterial District Court level and the Common Pleas level. While this may be a new experience for you, rest assured in knowing that we have successfully handled and routinely see situations just like yours. With offices in Southampton, we are ready to help this community stay on the road.
When faced with Improper Passing of a School Bus, hiring an intelligent and experienced defense attorney is a good first step in protecting your rights and your license.
This content was written on behalf of Greg Prosmushkin.