Fines, points & jail time: Onondaga Co Sheriff’s Office shares legal ramifications if you don’t stop for school buses

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ONONDAGA COUNTY, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Just ahead of school starting for local districts, the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Department is warning the public to stop for school buses when red lights are flashing.

The sheriff’s office shared the warning in a post on Facebook, stating that there are legal and financial penalties for failing to stop for buses as they are picking up or dropping off students. 

Penalties for failing to stop are listed below. 

  • First conviction – fine of $250-$400 and/or up to 30 days in jail
  • Second conviction within 3 years – fine of $600-$750 and/or up to 180 days in jail
  • Third conviction (or more) within 3 years – fine of $750-$1000 and/or up to 180 days in jail
  • Five points will be added to the operator’s driving record for each conviction

Due to a law passed in 2019, school districts and municipalities can use stop-arm cameras on school buses to catch and penalize owners of vehicles that pass school buses when they are stopped and their lights are flashing. Legal ramifications if caught doing this are listed below.

  • First violation – penalty of $250
  • Second violation within 18 months – penalty of $275
  • Third violation (or more) within 18 months – penalty of $300

The sheriff’s office reminds the public to be patient as kids are boarding or leaving the bus, especially as drivers and school districts map out and get used to new routes and schedules.

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