Bus Safety Week (Monday 22 to Sunday 28 February 2021) provides a timely reminder to parents and careers to have a talk with their children and loved ones about bus safety, motorists should always remember to give ways to buses, pedestrians should always remember to make sure they are alert of their surroundings and cyclists should remember to ensure they can see where buses are.

Lights begin to flash when the bus stops and the doors open, and they keep flashing for about 20 seconds after the doors close. Children are most at risk in the minutes after they get off the bus. If your child catches the bus to or from school, remind them to always wait until the bus has gone before choosing a safe place to cross the road. Remind them to STOP, LOOK, LISTEN and THINK before crossing the road. The majority of accidents happen in low km zones with no marked crossings. Children need to make sure they aren’t looking at their phones or talking to their friends while getting ready to cross. Motorists should look out for children who are crossing the road or waiting to cross. Lights flashing on buses is a way to warn motorists that buses are picking up and dropping off children. By law, a driver must not overtake or pass a bus with flashing lights at more than 40km/h.

Pedestrians and passengers should always remember to plan ahead and not rush for the bus, avoid being distracted by mobile phone or other devices and should always stand back from the kerb when waiting for a bus. Pedestrians and passengers should also remember that when the bus has already moved away from the bus stop then they should not try to hail down the bus or step onto the road for the bus. Buses are heavy vehicles and cannot stop quickly. Do not step out in front of buses.

Motorists, cyclists, and motorcyclists should always remember to give way to buses when they are merging into traffic. If you cannot see a buses mirrors, the driver cannot see you. Be aware of blind spots at the front, back and sides of a bus. Motorists may not expect to see, or find it difficult to see, a child crossing the road at an informal bus stop. Leave plenty of space when you’re driving or stopped around buses, to keep children safe and improve bus drivers’ vision of the road environment. If you are overtaking a bus, avoid passing it when it is turning, buses can take up more than one lane when they are turning.

By doing these things we can help protect our loved ones and help each other stay safe on and around buses, helping to reduce injuries and fatalities.

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