Ministry of Transportation / Ministère des Transports
Home
Home > Bus Handbook > Stopping-for-school-buses law > Stopping requirements
Text size Enlarge Text Shrink Text
Search   |  
III. Stopping-for-school buses law
 
Stopping requirements
 

The stopping-for-school-buses law applies everywhere, regardless of the posted speed limit — on highways, county roads, city, town or village streets.

Motorists meeting (approaching from the opposite direction) a stopped school bus with its overhead red signal lights flashing, must stop before reaching the bus and shall not proceed until the bus moves or the overhead lights have stopped flashing. The only exception is on highways divided by a median; drivers on the other side of the median approaching from the opposite are not required to stop. (A median is a raised, lowered or earth strip dividing a road where vehicles travel in both directions.)

Diagram showing distance to leave behind stopped school bus

Diagram 5-1

Motorists approaching a stopped school bus from the rear with its overhead red signals lights flashing, shall stop at least 20 metres before reaching the bus and shall not proceed until the bus moves, or the overhead lights have stopped flashing.

Diagram showing distance for both lanes to leave behind stopped school bus

Diagram 5-2

Drivers who don’t stop for a school bus can be fined $400 to $2,000 and get six demerit points for a first offence. If you break the rule a second time within five years, the penalty is a fine of $1,000 to $4,000 and six demerit points. You could also go to jail for up to six months.

If the driver is not charged, the vehicle’s registered owner can be fined $400 to $2,000 for a first offence and $1,000 to $4,000 for subsequent offences within a five-year period if their vehicle illegally passes a school bus that is stopped with its red lights flashing. If the vehicle owner does not pay the fine, they will not be able to renew the vehicle’s permit.