Peru, IN - While school zone and bus stop patrols are always an area of officers’ focus during the school year, the Peru Police Department has announced that they will be using funding from Operation Pull Over to catch and enforce stop arm violations. These saturation patrols and undercover patrols aim to reduce the frequency of these violations to ensure children make it to and from school safely.
Indiana Codes 9-21-12-11 and 9-21-8-522 both make it illegal to pass a school bus with the stop arm extended, fail to stop before reaching a school bus with a stop arm extended, or proceed before the stop arm is no longer extended. Depending on the severity and circumstances of the offense committed, the offense can be charged as either a Class A Infraction (ticket) or a Class B Misdemeanor (arrest).
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, between the 10-year period of 2006 to 2015, there were 1,313 people killed in school transportation-related crashes. Of these 1,313 people, 301 (or about 23%) were children under the age of 18 years old.3 The Indiana Department of Education reported that in just one day in 2018, 3082 vehicles passed a school bus with its stop arm extended.4 Peru Community Schools’ Transportation Director Dave Frushour estimates that he receives about five to six complaints from local bus drivers each day regarding vehicles failing to stop for stop arms as required.
The Peru Police Department encourages drivers to do their part to stop reckless driving by leaving the house earlier to ensure safe driving speeds, refusing to text and drive and keeping their eyes and mind focused on the road ahead – especially during high-congestion times such as the start and end of the school day.
If you witness any vehicle fail to obey an extended school bus stop arm, call dispatch at 765-473-5522 to report the offense with a vehicle description and location.