As a parent and a driver, I am always super cautious whenever I need to drive near a school bus.  Two of my biggest fears are my kids being injured in a crash and me causing someone else's kids to be injured in a crash.

I believe that most people believe the same way that I do.  Most people are very cautious whenever they are near a school bus.

Most people, but not everyone.

Over the last few years, we have seen a slew of cases when people passed by stopped school buses.

In one case, a teen driver sped past a stopped school bus, nearly hitting a child getting off the bus.  The only thing that saved the kid was a quick-thinking bus driver who grabbed the child's backpack, holding the kid back.

Sadly, in at least a few of these cases, the child getting on (or off) that bus was hit by the driver and injured.

Everyone knows how dangerous passing a stopped bus is, but these incidents still happen.  So, is the problem that the penalties are too lenient?

According to the Maine Legislature website, the current penalties are as follows:

 a $250 minimum fine for the first offense and a mandatory 30-day suspension of a driver's license for a 2nd offense occurring within 3 years of the first offense.

The above does not seem too lenient...  Until you compare it to the penalties from our neighbors to the north.

According to a WCSH 6 article from 2018, Prince Edward Island, Canada currently imposes fines of between $1,000 and $5,000 for first-time offenders.

Those who pass by a stopped school bus will also lose their license for up to three months.

Teacher asking her students a question at the elementary school
Getty Images

After those three months, they need to take a driving course and pay a license reinstatement fee.

What do you think?  Should we have penalties that are more in line with what Prince Edward Island is doing?

Let us know your thoughts on this by messaging us through our app.

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