Back to School: Road Rules 101

With schools back in session, you may find yourself stopped behind a school bus or slowing down in a school zone.

Approximately 1.5 million school kids are transported on PA roads every day, and in 2010, the state reported that 4,500 people were injured in pedestrian accidents. The highest rate of injuries was among children ages 10-14.

Just in case you have forgotten all that you learned in driver’s ed, we have compiled our Road Rules 101 Guide to remind you about some of the PA laws.

School Bus Stopping Laws

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, all drivers must take appropriate steps for keeping children safe as they ride a school bus. Details of the law include the following:

  • When you meet or overtake a stopped school bus with red signal lights flashing and stop arm extended, you MUST STOP.
  •  When you approach an intersection where a school bus is stopped with red signal lights flashing and stop arm extended, you MUSTSTOP.
  • You MUSTSTOP at least ten (10) feet away from the school bus.
  • You MUST WAIT until the red lights have stopped flashing and the stop arm has been withdrawn before moving.
  • DO NOT MOVE until all the children have reached a place of safety.

If you violate this, you may receive a 60-day suspension of your driver’s license, 5 points on your record, and a $250 fine.

School Zone Speed Limit

School zones are typically marked with signs at their “beginning” and “end.” These zones are a short distance so be patient.

The speed limit for school zones in Pennsylvania is 15 mph. If caught speeding in a school zone, you could face a fine of up to $500 and 3 points on your license. If caught speeding in a school zone a second time, you could lose your license for 60 days.

Pennsylvania Crosswalk Law

Drivers must yield to pedestrians when they are in a crosswalk at an intersection. Drivers must also yield to pedestrians crossing at any other designated and marked crosswalk.

Drivers who violate the crosswalk law may face a $50 fine and 2 points on their driving record.

On the other hand, pedestrians should only cross the street in marked crosswalks.