On Tuesday morning, a 14-year-old boy was walking to his school bus in West Park when a scooter struck the boy.
According to the Broward County Sheriff’s Department, the boy was struck when the driver of the scooter passed the stopped school bus in the area of Southwest 56th Avenue and Southwest 25th Street.
The Broward County Sheriff’s Office reported the injured teenager was transported to Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, while the driver of the scooter received minor injuries and will most undoubtedly be cited for passing a stopped school bus.
Florida law states that a driver always stops for a school bus with its lights flashing except when the driver is on a divided highway traveling in the opposite direction of the bus and there is at least five feet of unpaved space, a raised median, or a physical barrier separating the roadway from where the bus is stopped.
However if you are not driving on a divided highway that meets the above specifications, whenever you see a school bus with its lights blinking and stop signs out, whether you are behind the bus or facing the bus traveling in the opposite direction, you must stop.
A driver who passes a stopped school bus with its lights flashing and its stop sign extended, commits a moving violation. If a driver passes a bus illegally on the left, he can expect to receive the following penalties:
- 1st Offense – $165 fine
- 2nd or Subsequent Offense within five years – $165 fine plus license suspension for 90 days to six months
A driver who passes a stopped school bus illegally on the right, can expect more severe fines:
- 1st Offense – $265 fine
- 2nd or Subsequent Offense within five years – $265 fine, license suspension for 180 days to one year, plus a mandatory hearing
Offenders will also be required to attend and complete a DHSMV approved driver improvement course in 90 days.