Those big yellow school buses in Mason City will soon be carrying extra passengers wearing dark blue uniforms. Police officers will be hopping aboard buses to watch for other motorists who are endangering the lives of kids.
Mason City Police Lieutenant Ron Vande Weerd says over the next few months, officers will be riding along, focusing on motorists who pass the bus when they shouldn’t.
A marked squad car will also be in the vicinity and the officer on board the bus will be able to radio the officer in the squad car to apprehend the offenders. Vande Weerd says the purpose of the project is to help bring awareness to this serious issue and to increase protection of children getting on and off school buses.
Drivers are reminded they cannot pass a school bus from behind and must reduce their speed to 25 mph when the amber lights are flashing. When the red lights and stop signs are activated on the bus, other vehicles must come to a complete stop and remain stopped until the bus starts moving.
By Chris Berg, KCHA, Charles City