News Release, Police Department

National School Bus Safety Week

October 17, 2022

Hayward Police Department Reminds Drivers to Always Stop for School Buses During National School Bus Safety Week

Hayward, Calif. – This National School Bus Safety Week (October 17-21), Hayward Police Department supports efforts throughout the state to keep children and caregivers safe by reminding drivers on the dangers of passing a stopped school bus. Drivers are required to come to a complete stop when a school bus stop-arm is extended, and the red lights are flashing.

Held annually during the third week of October, National School Bus Safety Week is a way for parents, children, teachers, bus drivers, school administrators and law enforcement to promote traveling to and from school by bus as a safe transportation option. This year’s campaign focuses on preventing illegal school bus passing.

While riding the bus is the safest way for children to get to and from school, an alarming number of drivers illegally pass school buses who have their red lights activated. From 2011 to 2020 a total of 218 school-age children (18 and younger) died in school-bus-related crashes during that period, either riding on school buses, other cars, or on foot or bike, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

During National School Bus Safety Week, officers in plain clothes will work with uniformed officers to monitor crosswalks and areas surrounding the schools for drivers who do not yield for bicyclists or pedestrians, are speeding, or illegally passing a school bus. The enforcement period will run from 10/16/2022 to 10/22/2022.

With few exceptions, California law requires drivers to stop in both directions when a school bus has flashing red lights on. Drivers must stop until the red lights are off, and children are on or off the bus and safely out of the road.

“It is so important that we remind drivers in our community that when red lights are flashing, there is no passing,” Hayward Police Department Sergeant, Tasha DeCosta, said. “Children and their caretakers are relying on drivers to follow the law and keep them safe.”

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Media Point of Contact: Sgt. Tasha DeCosta (510)293-7169

Download the full press release.