Please join the Picton Buslines community as we promote Bus Safety Week from 25th-29th April 2022. We encourage you to take the time to read the below information with you children so we can all work together to make school bus travel safe for the community.

Drivers should look out for children who are crossing the road or waiting to cross. Lights flash on buses 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.

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.

Young children are often unpredictable in their movements. They are still developing the skills that help them to judge the direction of sound and the speed and distance of vehicles.

Whether you are a motorist, or a parent/carer of a school child, we can all help to keep school children safe.

MOTORISTS

– Lights flash on buses to warn motorists that buses are picking up and dropping off children.

– You must slow down to 40km/h when overtaking or passing a bus displaying flashing lights.

You can help keep children safe by:

• Sticking to the speed limit and following the road rules in school zones

• Slowing down to 40km/h when bus lights are flashing

• Looking out for children crossing the road near bus stops, in school zones or along bus routes

• Giving way to buses when they merge back into traffic.

FAMILIES

– Families have an important part to play in keeping children safe around roads.

– Never drop off or meet your child on the opposite side of the road to the bus stop or call them across the road. Always drop them off or meet them on the same side of the road as the bus stop.

– Remind your children to always wait until the bus has gone before choosing a safe place to cross the road

– Always supervise your child and hold their hand when walking to and from the bus stop or interchange and when crossing the road until they are at least 10

– Encourage your child to take a seat quickly when they get on the bus and to buckle up if the bus has seatbelts.

RURAL AND REGIONAL AREAS

In rural and regional areas there are many Informal school bus stops that do not have signs or infrastructure, such as a bus shelter. They are often temporary and located at the end of a driveway or residence. Slow down to 40km/h when bus lights flash, look out for children crossing the road, and be aware that a stationary bus can impede view of children around buses.

Parents and carers also play an important role in ensuring the safety of students around school bus stops. If your child needs to use a rural bus stop that doesn’t have signs or other safety infrastructure – think about whether it’s located in a safe spot that allows buses to stop away from the road, with good lines of sight in both directions, and includes a safe place for you to park your vehicle and wait.

There are a number of free resources available for motorists, schools and families to use:

– Centre for Road Safety website https://roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov.au/campaigns/be-bus-aware/bus-flashing-lights.html

– Road safety website for primary school students, teachers and families: https://www.safetytown.com.au/

– Road safety website for secondary school students, teachers and families: https://onthemove.nsw.edu.au/