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VIDEO: Car blows past WF school bus, police say special circumstance makes it legal

Published: Feb. 9, 2021 at 6:11 PM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - Parents in West Fargo are frustrated after another car was caught on camera Tuesday morning driving past the school bus with its stop arm out in the 2300 block of 9th St. W., near Brooks Harbor Elementary.

We first showed a video of another incident back in September, it’s almost identical to the situation that happened Tuesday morning. However, West Fargo Police say none of the drivers are in the wrong.

“Because it’s a divided highway with the barrier that occurs here on ninth street, oncoming traffic is not required under North Dakota Century Code to stop for that violation,” West Fargo Police Sgt. Derek Cruff said.

Cruff says if the car wouldn’t have stopped while the child was already in the crosswalk, that would have been a different story.

“As soon as the person steps in the crosswalk, at that point, traffic is mandated to stop to them in a marked crosswalk,” he said.

Cruff says because most of the school year has been hybrid, the department hasn’t seen many issues with drivers ignoring stop arms. He says as kids are transitioning to more time in the classroom and eventually some warmer weather in the Valley, it’s important to talk to your kids about crosswalk and pedestrian safety.

“I know kids are anxious to get to school, they’re anxious to get to the bus. Sometimes they’re running a little late. We have to take some extra time and just be conscience of our surroundings of what’s going on,” he said.

When a road is not divided, it is illegal to drive by a school bus with the stop arm out in both North Dakota and Minnesota. In North Dakota, offenders can receive a $100 fine and have six points taken off their driver’s license. In Minnesota, a driver who fails to stop can be fined a minimum of $500.

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