ROCKFORD (WIFR) – UPDATE: Many of us have seen cars blowing through school bus stop signs, and it happens all too often in Rockford Public Schools.
"Every day, throughout the city, Cherry Valley, we have problems with cars driving through the bus's red lights," says District 205 Transportation Director Gregg Wilson.
On May 21, 77 vehicles were caught running the signs in a districtwide detail; perhaps some of (those drivers) didn't know the rules of the road.
This is how the law works; if you're driving on a two-lane road, cars in both directions must stop is a school bus stop sign is out. But if you're on a four-lane road, with two lanes in each direction, only the vehicles going the same direction as the school bus must stop. State law says students on buses can't cross a four-lane road.
Jennifer Facer has two kids that go to Welsh Elementary School and she says she constantly sees drivers breaking the law.
"I see them go around the buses and I'm concerned because the buses have to park out (in the road) a ways and the children getting on the buses have to walk a little bit out in the street," explains Facer.
Facer says she'd like to see more of a police presence when school lets out.
"It would be nice if the officers wouldn't just drive by, that they'd hang around a little while."
If an officer catches a car running a school bus stop sign, that driver faces a $150 fine and a three-month license suspension.
Students nationwide and here in the Stateline are being put in danger on a daily basis. The issue is cars that run through school bus stop signs.
We stopped by Lewis Lemon Elementary School this afternoon and within 20 minutes there were at least half a dozen cars running through the signs. Buses line up outside the school and when kids are getting on, they have their lights flashing and the stop sign out on a two-lane road. That means cars in both directions must stop, but not all of them are.
It’s happening at many schools, not just Lewis Lemon which increases the risk of a child getting hurt.
"We never know where children are going, we train them, we work with them, we've gone through our safety drills and yet we worry they're just going to run in front of a car, so when you see a school bus, plan to stop, be ready for children at all times,” said Gregg Wilson. District 205 Transportation Director.
Although there’s no fool-proof method to prevent cars from running the signs, police officers will sometimes sit near schools to catch drivers that do. If you’re caught, it’s a $150 fine and a license suspension of three months.