Think twice about passing school buses in Florida

by Jan 8, 2021Auto Accident

Think twice about passing school buses in Florida

by Jan 8, 2021Auto Accident

Think twice about passing school buses in Florida
Think twice about passing school buses in Florida

It is always wise to slow down in school zones, and you should never pass a stopped school bus. The stop-sign and flashing lights displayed by a stopped school bus are there for a reason. They help keep kids who are crossing the street safe. Passing school buses in Florida is a crime. As of the 1st of January 2021, the penalty for not stopping for a school bus doubled. It has gone from $100 to $200.

This new law comes after several high-profile cars versus school bus accidents in which the kids involved died or were seriously injured. According to the new law, the minimum fine for passing a school bus is $200. If you commit a second offense within 5 years, your license will be suspended for up to a year. If you pass a school bus on the side that children enter and exit you must pay a minimum fine of $400. If you commit a second offense within 5 years of the first offense, your license will be suspended for up to two years.

The law was unanimously approved by members of the Florida House and Senate. It also has large popular support in that it aims to deter overly aggressive drivers.

Save Yourself, Your Vehicle, and Your Reputation

Passing school buses in Florida is a reckless act. However, it is not the only kind of action that can lead to a bus accident. The best way to save yourself money and to prevent the life-altering physical, emotional and reputational damage that can result from colliding with a school bus is to remain vigilant, follow traffic laws, and use good judgment.

Here are some of the most common causes of vehicle accidents in Florida. Avoiding these types of behavior will reduce your risk of an accident:

1. Driving at excessive speeds

Everyone exceeds the speed limit from time to time. If you are alone on the road at night, you may be tempted to do so. You may also feel the urge to speed when you are running behind schedule. A few miles above the speed limit may be excusable on certain occasions. But if you make a habit of greatly exceeding the speed limit no matter the circumstances, you put yourself and others in great danger.

2. Aggression

Rage driving creates more problems than it solves. It is natural to feel indignant about a driver who cuts you off, makes a move that endangers you and your passengers, or commits some other offensive act. However, you should not attempt to revenge yourself on the road. Nor should you take whatever general frustrations you may be feeling in life out on the road. Erratic and violent driving can lead to an accident.

3. Using your smartphone

You should not send or receive texts while driving. No matter how adept you think you have become at it, texting diverts your attention from the road. You may miss the movements of other vehicles around you, which can lead to an accident.

Using your smartphone while driving shows a reckless disregard for the lives and well-being of others. No act of communication is more important than a person’s life.

4. Drugs and alcohol

This is another act that shows a reckless disregard for human life. Despite what you may think, your driving skills are not improved after drinking alcohol. The latter has a depressive effect on your cognitive ability. Your mental acuity and motor skills will not be as sharp as they are when you are sober. It will be harder for you to respond quickly to emergent situations and to take evasive action.

You should also avoid drugs, which will also distort your cognitive ability. This includes prescription medication. If you know the side effects of your medication, you should not drive after you have taken it.

5. Blowing through traffic signs and signals

These signs and signals govern and regulate the flow of traffic. They are designed to keep everyone safe. If you run through a red light, you will put yourself and other drivers at risk. You must also pay attention to slow speed zones. When you approach a school area, you will see signs warning you of this. You should pay heed.

6. Fatigue and sleep deprivation

Driving long-distances can leave you tired and fatigued. Your mind is less alert at this point, and the best thing to do is to pull over and sleep for a while. Falling asleep at the wheel is a big problem among truck drivers who must meet tight deadlines, but is not exclusive to them. If you have taken a day trip to another city, you may be quite tired on the drive back. You should work out a plan ahead of time to avoid driving while fatigued.

7. Bad weather

Rain, sleet, snow, high winds, and icy roads are just some of the weather conditions that can increase the risk of an accident. It is not much you can do about bad weather conditions, especially if they start after you are already on the road. But you can adjust your behavior in light of such deterioration. When visibility is low and the road conditions are bad, you should drive with more caution. If things get too bad, pulling over for a while is an option.

8. Foreign objects

Road debris and other errant items can cause problems. You should drive around them if you can. Running over them can damage your tires and cause you to crash.

9. Defects

Most cars are well-engineered and highly reliable. Catastrophic failures are rare. However, if your vehicle was fitted with defective parts, it can cause the kind of breakdown that leads to an accident.

Taking the Right Action After a Bus Accident

Any of the above conditions can lead to an accident with a school bus. Even if you are a careful and vigilant driver and you follow all traffic laws and road rules, you may still end up in a bus accident. An accident with a school bus is a highly sensitive matter. It will put the spotlight on you straightaway. However, if you are not the person who caused the accident, if the negligence or recklessness of the driver led to the crash, then you should hold them accountable.

You should hire a bus accident attorney. If you were injured in the accident, you will need a lawyer to defend your reputation and to get you compensation for the injuries you have sustained. You should call a bus accident attorney as soon as you can after the accident. If the crash put you in the hospital for weeks, then you should speak to your attorney while you recover. It is better to confront the financial realities that result from the accident sooner rather than later. The attorney you hire will help you build a case against the other driver.

Your lawyer will bring in a professional investigator to gather all the facts related to the crash. The investigator will review any traffic footage of the scene. They will also track down and interview people who witnessed the collision.

The marks and debris left by the crash will reveal a great deal about how it happened. Your lawyer will bring in a forensics expert to analyze this evidence, which can go a long way toward supporting your version of events.

If you have been in an accident with a school bus, you need legal representation. You should speak to a law firm that handles these kinds of cases.

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