EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ - It's no small matter or light summons if a driver passes a school bus that has stopped to let students on or off. A first violation of New Jersey State Law 39:4-128.1 is a fine of no less than $100, five points along with the possibility of fifteen days in jail, or community service. Judging by the online chatter on local social media here in East Brunswick, a disturbing number of incidents have occurred when drivers have passed school busses and have put children at risk. Some parents have even photographed the drivers as they passed a school bus. Incidents have occurred around the township, but residents have indicated that a trouble spot seems to be Rues Lane near the Voc-Tech and the mall.
The East Brunswick Police Department will continue enforcement efforts to deter motorists from passing school buses when picking up or discharging students and wants to educate the public about the dangers of passing buses when their lights are flashing.
New Jersey State law 39:4-128.1 informs motorists that on roadways not divided by safety islands or physical traffic separation installations, the driver of a vehicle approaching or overtaking a bus, which is being used for the transportation of children to or from school or a summer day camp or any school connected activity, shall stop such vehicle not less than 25 feet from such school bus and keep such vehicle stationary until such child or person who has a developmental disability has entered said bus or has alighted and reached the side of such roadway and until a flashing red light is no longer exhibited by the bus.
The EBPD urges that for the safety of children and others, never drive while texting or talking on a cell phone and pay attention to surroundings at all times.
Any private citizen who observes a violation of 39:4-128.1 and records the license plate of the violator has the right to sign a complaint in East Brunswick Municipal Court. Police advise residents never to attempt to stop or address a violator, but to report any violations to the EBPD.
If residents have any questions or have identified a problematic location where motor vehicles are passing stopped school buses, please contact the East Brunswick Police Special Operations Division at 732-390-6969 and our officers will take appropriate enforcement action.