The end of August and the beginning of September ushers in students all over Texas back into our public and private education classrooms. For many, one of the first visual signs of back-to-school season is the return of school buses in traffic, an increase in traffic congestion, and blinking lights indicating a school zone. In order to best protect the safety of our students traveling to and from school, all drivers should practice utmost caution around schools and school buses. As a reminder, familiarize yourself with the following Texas traffic laws:
School buses – Under Texas law, drivers must stop before reaching a stopped school bus that is receiving or discharging students. Further, Texas Transportation Code § 545.066 requires that drivers, traveling in either direction, may only proceed once a school bus has resumed driving, the flashing lights have stopped, or the school bus driver signals for a driver to proceed.
Crosswalks – Drivers are required to stop at crosswalks for pedestrians.
School zones – Other than abiding by the speed limitations designated during school hours, it is important to remember that using a handheld device while driving in a school zone is prohibited in Texas.
Despite the fact that the majority of drivers exercise utmost caution around school areas and buses, accidents involving school buses are not uncommon, most often due to the inattentiveness of drivers. Those who have personal injuries resulting from these accidents are able to file a lawsuit against the party(ies) at fault. Lawsuits provide a means for those who are injured to seek financial compensation for costs associated with injuries due to the negligent conduct of the responsible party(ies). Proving fault, however, may be difficult in a case involving school buses for a variety of reasons including the liability of schools, the number of parties who may be at fault, and the volume of students who may be injured riding on a school bus.
Our attorneys at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner have the knowledge, experience, and resources necessary to help you navigate these tough legal questions regarding school bus-related accidents and can help you obtain just compensation for you or your child’s injuries. If you or a loved one have been injured in an accident involving a school bus, call us today at 713-226-5160 or visit our website for your free in-person or virtual consultation.
For additional resources on school safety, see the below web pages.
— Take 5 on School Safety, Texas Department of Insurance
— School Bus Safety, Texas Department of Transportation