What are laws regarding school buses?

Sep. 9—Question: I know it's discouraged, but is it actually illegal for students to be standing on a school bus while it is moving?

Answer: Minnesota state law says no person shall stand in a school bus when the bus is in motion.

In addition, the aisle and emergency exit of a school bus shall be kept unobstructed at all times when children are being transported.

Here's a list of other school bus laws:


—State law requires all vehicles to stop for school buses when the bus driver activates the flashing lights and has the stop arm fully extended. Drivers who violate the law face a $500 fine.

—Drivers face gross misdemeanor criminal charges for passing a school bus on the right or passing when a child is outside the bus. They face felony charges if a child is injured or killed in such an incident.

—On undivided roads, motorists traveling both directions must stop at least 20 feet from a school bus that is displaying red flashing lights and an extended stop arm.

—Traffic traveling the opposite direction on a divided roadway with a separating median such as a concrete wall or boulevard is not required to stop.

—Motorists should slow down, pay attention and anticipate school children and buses, especially in neighborhoods and school zones.


—When getting off a bus, look to be sure no cars are passing on the shoulder.

—Wait for the bus driver to signal that it's safe to cross.

—When crossing the street to get on the bus or to go home, make eye contact with motorists before proceeding.

Any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Trooper Troy Christianson, Minnesota State Patrol, 2900 48th St., NW, Rochester MN 55901-5848; or send an email to: Troy.Christianson@state.mn.us.