Officials in the Columbia Valley want to increase public awareness of the need to stop for school buses.
There’s a growing concern in the area about the number of reports of motorists failing to pull over for buses picking up or dropping of students.
Between the start of January and mid-February, the region’s RCMP detachment received 10 different reports of illegal passing and an Alberta driver was caught blowing by a bus full of children earlier this month and is facing a fine.
This followed an existing worry from police and school district staff.
Superintendent Paul Carriere says an educational campaign could help get information out, and keep it on the minds of drivers.
“It just needs to come into the consciousness of people, because it is happening enough that is a significant misunderstanding,” Carriere suggests. “People wouldn’t intentionally put children in harms way but people should recognize when they run a bus-red, that’s exactly what they are doing.”
The Rocky Mountain School District worked with RCMP in 2016 on Operation Safe Stop, an in initiative that promotes school bus safety through education and enforcement efforts.
Columbia Valley RCMP Cst. Brent Ayers believes it was a success and could work again.
“[School district staff] coincided with a couple of shifts for our police officers and we attended out with them in the morning and afternoon and stopped all the traffic to provide them a pamphlet on what to when approaching a stopped school bus.”
Operation Safe Stop Education and Enforcement Day is April 26th this year.
– Rocky Mountain School District Superintendent Paul Carriere
– Columbia Valley RCMP Cst. Brent Ayers