Traffic Safety Board Red Light Offenders

Dear Parents and Community,

Recently, the Putnam County School Bus Transportation Supervisors of the surrounding districts met with the Putnam County Traffic Safety Board. We met to discuss how we can work together as a team to effectively reduce the incidences of illegal passing of school buses. We have noticed an increase in these incidents and we need your help as responsible motorists. The safety of our children is our top priority and reckless drivers who put our kids in danger must be held accountable!

OUR GOAL: RED LIGHT OFFENDERS!

In this meeting, we outlined EDUCATION and AWARENESS to be the primary components for a successful program.  The School District’s Transportation Departments regularly observes and regulates the driver’s proper stopping procedure to be within compliance of the law.(15 NYCRR 6.8 c) Our school bus passengers are reminded daily on how to enter and exit the school bus
safely and to follow the safe crossing procedures. (8 NYCRR 153.3 d4) Here are some ways we can work together to help promote safety and enhance the awareness of the law and the dangers of illegally passing a school bus.

  • Be at the bus stop ~ minutes early and limit your conversation with the driver. A bus stopped for a prolonged period of time will confuse the motorist and they will be tempted to pass.
  • Contact your transportation department with all questions and concerns.
  • Review the “Safe Crossing Procedure”(below) and the §. life saving tips (below) in the classroom and at home.
  • Remind your student to always pay attention to the driver when getting on and off the school bus.
  • Share with your friends and family that it is illegal to pass a stopped school bus when the red lights are flashing. This includes times when students are boarding/deboarding on school property.
  • Remember, illegally passing a stopped school bus can cost you a citation, fines, points on your license, and the unforgivable student injury.
  • If you witness a motorist illegally pass a school bus immediately report the license plate to your local law enforcement agency.
  • Report to your local school Transportation and Police Department specific locations you have repeatedly witnessed these RED LIGHT offenders.

Below is some helpful information regarding school bus safety:

OPERATION SAFE STOP: MAY 2, 2019

http://www.safeny.ny.gov/opsafstp.htm

Student Crossing Procedures:
www.liverpool.k12.ny.us

School Bus Safety

https://www.nhtsa.gov/road-safety/school-bus-safety
https://www.nsc.org/…/seasonal-safety/back-to-school/bus
https://www.scholastic.com/…/school-bus-safety-printable-poster.html

As the Putnam County Traffic Safety Board, we plan to continue working closely with our School District’s bus drivers, the Sheriff’s Department, and the State police to reduce
these Red Light offenders and enhance the safety of the students in our community.
Please join us in our efforts!

Sincerely,

Judie Mirra

Liaison/Coordinator
Putnam County Traffic Safety Board
3 County Center
Carmel, New York 10512
845-225-4300 Ext. 42213

judie.mirra@putnamcountyny.gov

A Reminder – Passing a School Bus With Red Flashing Lights Is Illegal

Putnam County Sheriff Robert L. Langley, and the entire Putnam County Traffic Safety Committee reports that the Putnam County Sheriff’s Department, Town of Carmel Police Department and the Town of Kent Police Department have received numerous complaints regarding motorists passing stopped school buses. Under New York State law, it is illegal to pass a school bus that is stopped to discharge or receive students. School buses activate yellow flashing lights to alert motorists that they are preparing to discharge or receive students. Red flashing lights and an extended stop sign arm signals to motorists that a school bus is stopped and children are either boarding or exiting the bus. When red flashing lights are activated, traffic is required to stop in both directions on undivided highways, regardless of the number of lanes, to allow students to board or exit the school bus.

As school children, countywide, get ready to return to school from their holiday break, motorists are reminded that New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law 1174(A) requires drivers to stop, from either direction, even on a divided highway, any time red lights on a bus are flashing. Flashing lights mean the bus is picking up or discharging students. Most school bus related deaths and injuries occur while children cross the street after being discharged from the bus, rather than in collisions that involve school buses. Passing a school bus with red lights is not only dangerous, but it is illegal and punishable with fines ranging from $250 to $1,000. Five points may be assessed to one’s driver’s license, and penalties can also include possible imprisonment (up to 30 days for the first offense and180 days for a third or subsequent conviction).

The area 10 feet around a school bus is where children are in the most danger of being struck by a passing vehicle. Drivers should stop their cars far enough from a school bus to give students the space necessary to safely enter and exit the bus.

The Traffic Safety Board will be working with various agencies and stakeholders to insure that this law is enforced. We are asking community members to help gather information about those vehicles violating this law by getting license plate numbers, the location of the violation and a description of the car and motorists whenever possible. We need to work together to insure the safety of our children.

School Opens September 4th & School Days Bring Congestion! Here are some Traffic safety tips!

School days bring congestion: Yellow school buses are picking up their charges, kids on bikes are hurrying to get to school before the bell rings and harried parents are trying to drop their kids off before work.

It’s never more important for drivers to slow down and pay attention than when kids are present – especially before and after school.

 

If You’re Dropping Off

Schools often have very specific drop-off procedures for the school year. Make sure you know them for the safety of all kids. More children are hit by cars near schools than at any other location, according to the National Safe Routes to School program. The following apply to all school zones:

Don’t double park; it blocks visibility for other children and vehicles

Don’t load or unload children across the street from the school

Carpool to reduce the number of vehicles at the school

Sharing the Road with Young Pedestrians

According to research by the National Safety Council, most of the children who lose their lives in bus-related incidents are 4 to 7 years old, and they’re walking. They are hit by the bus, or by a motorist illegally passing a stopped bus. A few precautions go a long way toward keeping children safe:

Don’t block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn, forcing pedestrians to go around you; this could put them in the path of moving traffic

In a school zone when flashers are blinking, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection

Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign

Take extra care to look out for children in school zones, near playgrounds and parks, and in all residential areas

Don’t honk or rev your engine to scare a pedestrian, even if you have the right of way

Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians

Always use extreme caution to avoid striking pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way

Sharing the Road with School Buses

If you’re driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It will give you more time to stop once the yellow lights start flashing. It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children.

Never pass a bus from behind – or from either direction if you’re on an undivided road – if it is stopped to load or unload children

If the yellow or red lights are flashing and the stop arm is extended, traffic must stop

The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus

Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks

Sharing the Road with Bicyclists

On most roads, bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as vehicles, but bikes can be hard to see. Children riding bikes create special problems for drivers because usually they are not able to properly determine traffic conditions. The most common cause of collision is a driver turning left in front of a bicyclist.

When passing a bicyclist, proceed in the same direction slowly, and leave 3 feet between your car and the cyclist

When turning left and a bicyclist is approaching in the opposite direction, wait for the rider to pass

If you’re turning right and a bicyclists is approaching from behind on the right, let the rider go through the intersection first, and always use your turn signals

Watch for bike riders turning in front of you without looking or signaling; children especially have a tendency to do this

Be extra vigilant in school zones and residential neighborhoods

Watch for bikes coming from driveways or behind parked cars

Check side mirrors before opening your door

By exercising a little extra care and caution, drivers and pedestrians can co-exist safely in school zones.

Motorists and Bicyclists: Sheriff’s Safety Reminder About Road Sharing Rules

Putnam County Sheriff Robert L. Langley, Jr., who also serves as Chairman of the Putnam County Traffic Safety Board, is reminding motorists and bicyclists of the rules for sharing the road safely.

An amendment to the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law was enacted in 2010 that requires motorists to pass “at a safe distance” when overtaking a bicyclist traveling along the same side of the road. That law is commonly referred to as “Merrill’s Law” because the legislation was prompted by the death of Mr. Merrill Cassell, an avid cyclist who was struck and killed by a passing bus while he was riding along a road in Greenburgh.

The Vehicle and Traffic Law also provides rules for sharing the road that bicyclists must follow. When riding along a road, bicyclists must use a dedicated bicycle lane if one is provided or, if not, then near the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway or upon a usable right-hand shoulder. Under the law, bikes must be ridden in a manner that prevents undue interference with the flow of traffic except when preparing for a left turn or when reasonably necessary to avoid conditions that would make it unsafe to continue along near the right-hand curb or edge.

Persons riding bicycles upon a roadway may not ride more than two abreast. Persons riding bicycles upon a roadway must ride in single file when being overtaken by a vehicle. Persons riding bicycles upon a shoulder, bicycle lane or bicycle path may ride two or more abreast if sufficient space is available, except that they must ride in single file when passing a vehicle, bicycle or pedestrian.

Any person riding a bicycle who is entering the roadway from a private road, driveway, alley or over a curb must come to a full stop before entering the roadway. Bicyclists under the age of 14 years-old must wear helmets and children under the age of one may not be carried on a bicycle.

“We want everyone – motorists, bicyclists, joggers and pedestrians to be able to enjoy safe travels along our roads” stated the Sheriff, “and if we all endeavor to show respect, care and courtesy toward each other in sharing the road, then we will all be safer.”

Revised Road Work Schedule 6/18-6/22

***UPDATED REVISION***

Revision to the revision:

Paving will commence during the day on Monday June 18, 2018 9am to 4pm, mon – fri

Only the loop work will be occurring at night 8pm – 6am. Mon – thurs.

Week of 6/24-6/29

Loops will continue sun – thurs 8pm-6am

Any remaining milling & paving, shoulder backup, gutter work will be mon-fri 9am – 4pm.

***Revised Schedule 6/18-6/22***

The milling and paving will continue Monday night on the shoulders WB 8PM-6AM, then will resume during the daytime T-F, 9Am-4PM, with any remaining shoulder & side street work.

Loop work will begin on Monday night and continue nightly until complete. Approximately 2-3 weeks. Schedule will be S-F, 8pm-6am and will be at signalized intersections. Work will progress one intersection at a time.

All work is weather dependent and will shift accordingly.

****Schedule 6/25-6/29 ****

Any remaining gutter work, shoulder backup & cleanup will continue daytime with the hours of 9am-4pm, M-F

Loops will continue 8pm-6am S-F.

All work is weather dependent and will shift accordingly

Thank you.

Update from the Putnam County Traffic Safety Board: ***Revised Schedule 6/4-6/8***

Update from the Putnam County Traffic Safety Board:

***Revised Schedule 6/4-6/8***           

Work will continue Monday thru Friday 9am-4pm.

Monday will be prep work & layout.

Milling & Paving will be starting on Tuesday with the left turning lanes & gore areas from Old Rt. 6 (the west side of Putnam Plaza) to Rt. 312. There will be either lane shifting or alternating traffic based on the work location. As discussed at the meeting, there will be a lot of moving parts to the operation, please be prepared.

Sunday 6/10, as stated in the 6/10 notification, the milling & paving will continue from the Rt. 52/Rt. 6 split, 8pm to 6am.

All work is weather dependent and will shift accordingly.

Milling & Paving Update! Week of 6/4 to 6/8 and 6/10/ to 6/15

Week of 6/4-6/8

Route 6
Rt. 52 eastbound to Rt. 312

Rt. 312 westbound to Rt. 52

Work will continue Monday thru Friday, 9am-4pm with the prep work and layout.

Any remaining paving prep work will be done along with layout. There will either be lane shifting or alternating traffic based on the work location and activity.

All work is weather dependent and will shift accordingly.

Please expect delays. Find alternate routes where possible and please be courteous to other drivers and the project workers.

Rt. 312 westbound to Rt. 52
Work will continue Monday thru Friday 9am-4pm with the prep work and layout.
Any remaining paving prep work will be done along with layout. There will be either lane shifting or alternating traffic based on the work location & activity.

All work is weather dependent and will shift accordingly. Expect delays, please be patient and drive carefully

 

 

Week of 6/10-6/15

Route 6

Rt. 52 eastbound to Rt. 312

Rt. 312 westbound to Rt. 52

Milling and paving will begin on Sunday night, 6/10 from 8:00pm to 6:00am, Sunday thru Friday, 6/10-6/15. Current anticipated schedule is Sunday thru Thursday, but any inclement weather or other issues will shift the work thru Friday. There will be a total of 5 nights milling and paving. Weather and any other issues will shift the work thru Friday and/or the following week.

Any remaining milling and paving work that is not completed the week of 6/10-6/15 (or shifted 5 days) will be done during the daytime hours of 9am-4pm the following week, 6/18-6/22 (or shifted 5 days).

The milling and paving will begin at the Rt. 52/Rt.6 split and continue east thru Rt. 312.

Updates will be posted as to the project progress.

Please expect delays. Find alternate routes where possible and please be courteous to other drivers and the project workers.

Milling and Resurfacing Project from Rte 6 to Rte 52 and Rte. 6 to Rte 312

From the Putnam County Sheriff’s Department and Traffic Safety Board

Milling and Resurfacing Project from Rte 6 to Rte 52 and Rte. 6 to Rte 312

The long awaited road work and paving for the roads mentioned above is about to begin and you might have already seen the Variable Message Boards flashing

Roadwork Ahead  9 am – 4 pm.

Preliminary work has begun in the catch basins with the expected milling and filling work to begin approximately June 11th. This project is expected to take between 3-5 weeks, working during the day and some nights, and is dependent on weather conditions and construction unknowns. As we have been told by the NYS DOT Project Engineer, be prepared for some traffic inconveniences, loud noises, dust/dirt and general frustrations. However, please remember, as with most construction renovations, the outcome will be well worth it. The safety of our residents, our local businesses, school schedules and emergency services have all been discussed as to keeping the impact of the project at a minimal.

For up-to-date information, please look at the Putnam County Sheriff’s Department website and Facebook page, the Putnam County Traffic Safety Board’s website and Facebook page, the Town of Carmel website and your local newspapers.