Stop Arm Violation Survey Released
Jennifer Lewerenz | May 16, 2019 AT 11:58 am
(KNSI) - The Minnesota State Patrol released the results of their one-day school bus stop arm survey on Thursday.
The survey was done on April 17th and showed 625 drivers drove through an extended stop arm that day.
A video released by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, shows a fourth grader in the Zumbrota-Mazeppa School District almost run over while crossing the street to get to her school bus on January 16th.
The child's father, Pat Johnson, watching what almost happened to his daughter is disturbing.
"It's very hard to look at and your heart stops, you sink, you feel sick, your blood pressure goes up, we feel our daughter had an angel looking out for her that day."
The driver who almost hit her was charged and convicted in Wabasha County.
Johnson says he's not angry at the driver but instead wants drivers to be aware of what they're doing.
"It was an accident, but it could have been a deadly accident that could have happened to your children, just as it could have happened to ours. We just want say please slow down, protect our children."
The good news is that the numbers of tickets being written for stop arm violations is going down.
Officers wrote 1,573 tickets in 2014, 1,341 tickets in 2015, 1,240 tickets in 2016 and 1,211 tickets in 2017.
The bad news is that there were still 1,164 tickets written for stop arm violations in 2018, for a total of 6,529 tickets.
State law requires all vehicles must stop at least 20 feet from a school bus when the bus driver activates the flashing lights and has the crossing arm fully extended.
Drivers who violate the law face a $500 fine. Drivers can face criminal charges for passing a school bus on the right, passing when a child is outside the bus, or injuring or killing a child.
To watch the video, click here. The near miss starts at :27 on the left hand side of the screen. WARNING: Some viewers may find the video difficult to watch.