School buses are equipped with yellow (or amber) and red flashing lights. The yellow lights go on before the bus stops and the red lights go on when the bus has stopped. This means the bus will be picking up or discharging children. Motorists may proceed only after the lights have been turned off.


The law says:

It is illegal for motorists to pass a stopped school bus when the red lights are flashing


  • Fine between $100-$250
  • Five points on driving record
  • Imprisonment and/or community service
  • Possible license revocation

FYI – Did you know you have to stop for a frozen dessert truck with its flashing red lights on?

On a two lane roadway / on multi-lane roadways:

Vehicles approaching from both directions must stop at least 2 feet away from the bus

On a divided highway:

  • Vehicles approaching the bus from behind must stop at least 25 feet away from the bus
  • Vehicles approaching in the other direction, on the opposite side of the median, must slow to 10 miles per hour.
  • Divided highway is characterized by a safety island or raised median