LEGALLY REVIEWED BY:
Stephen R. Hasner
Managing Partner at Hasner Law PC
May 6, 2024

We are accustomed to seeing yellow school buses in urban and rural areas throughout Georgia during the school year.

These large vehicles transport precious cargo. They carry children to and from school, field trips, and other school functions and activities. Even though school buses are large, bright yellow, and equipped with flashing lights and a stop sign, drivers do not always stop for school buses.

Georgia Laws Require Drivers to Stop for a School Bus

In February 2019, stricter laws were enacted in Georgia, requiring drivers to stop for school buses. The new law removed the problems with the previous law that allowed drivers to pass a stopped school bus if they had a painted turn lane between their vehicle and the bus. Passing a stopped school bus when children are entering and exiting it could lead to a tragic bus accident.

Therefore, lawmakers revised the school bus law to ensure drivers must stop for a school bus, even on multi-lane roads. The goal was to protect children and avoid bus accidents.

Georgia drivers must stop for school busses on:

  • Two-lane Roads: ALL traffic traveling in ALL LANES must stop when a school bus stops for children.
  • Two-lane Roads with a Center Turning Lane: ALL traffic traveling in ALL LANES must stop when the school bus stops for children, including vehicles in the turning lane.
  • Four-lane Roads Without a Median Separation: ALL traffic traveling in ALL LANES must stop when the school bus stops for children. 
  • Roadway of Four or More Lanes with a Center Turning Lane: ALL traffic traveling in ALL LANES must stop when a school bus stops for children, including vehicles in the turning lane.
  • Divided Highway of Four or More Lanes with a Median Separation: When there is a median separating the lanes of traffic, only vehicles traveling in the same direction of the school bus must stop when the school bus stops for children.

In most cases, you must stop for a school bus whenever the driver signals a stop with the flashing lights and the stop sign. The only time you may continue moving is when there is a median separating your lane of traffic from the bus.

Who Is Responsible for School Bus Accidents?

School buses are one of the safest vehicles on the road. Even so, parents should talk with their children about school bus safety and the steps they must take to avoid injuries and accidents on school buses. 

Even though school buses do not have seat belts, the construction of the school bus protects children in the event of an accident.

Still, accidents involving school buses do happen, and children are injured and killed. Accidents might occur when the bus is in motion or when it is stopped for passengers. In some cases, children are struck and killed when a driver illegally passes the bus, rear-ends the bus, or runs into the sidewalk where children are waiting.

One or more parties could be liable for damages caused by a bus accident. Potentially liable parties might include:

  • Motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians
  • School bus drivers
  • Private schools or companies that operate school buses
  • School districts and governing bodies
  • Bus and parts manufacturers 
  • School bus maintenance companies
  • The owner of the school bus
  • Road construction companies and municipal road crews

Negligence, human error, and carelessness are often factors in a school bus accident. A Hasner Law personal injury attorney can investigate the cause of the school bus crash to identify the parties liable for the victim’s damages and injuries.

Contact the Atlanta Personal Injury Attorneys at Hasner Law for Help

For more information, please contact Hasner Law at (678) 928-8784 to schedule a free consultation today. Alternatively, complete our contact form.

Author Stephen Headshot
Managing Partner at Hasner Law PC
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Stephen Hasner is the founder and managing partner of Hasner Law PC. Since being licensed in Florida in 1997 and in Georgia in 1999, Stephen has worked tirelessly to help Georgia residents navigate the legal process following a serious injury. This includes injuries sustained at work, in motor vehicle accidents, and in cases of personal injury. The team at Hasner Law is dedicated to securing compensation for their clients who have been injured through no fault of their own.