School bus safety: Are you breaking the law?

- When it comes to stopping for school buses, how well do you know the law?

Montgomery County police released a video of a school bus coming to a stop on River Road in Bethesda with its flashing lights and stop arm activated. However, most drivers on both sides of the road just kept on going.

Both directions are required to stop because there is no median separation on the stretch of road.

The footage was reportedly recorded and forwarded to police Monday morning.

“Red lights come on, stop in both directions,” said Montgomery County Police Department Captain David Falcinelli. “There is an exception in the Maryland law that says if there's two separate roadways divided by a physical barrier, then those vehicles on the road opposite of the bus do not have to stop.”

By Tuesday morning, police organized a sting in the same location. Police say they issued four citations to four different drivers.

The fine for this offense is $570 and three points on your license.

Falcinelli said surveillance cameras on school buses have highlighted multiple violations and he is asking officers to pay particular attention to this law and conduct enforcement when necessary.

“If you're in doubt, stop,” said Falcinelli. “The saying we like to say is, ‘Paint does not protect.’ So if there's any way of your vehicle crossing from your side of the road to the other side of the road, without a physical barrier between, you have to stop.”

Here is the traffic safety law, according to the Maryland State Highway Administration:

Vehicles must stop for school buses when the buses' red flashers are on (except when the buses are on the opposite side of a highway divided by a barrier or median strip).

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