Salmon Arm  

We stop - You stop

Over the course of 19 school days in January, 32 motorists were seen passing school buses with their red lights flashing.

And during the last 14 months, School District 83 buses have been hit by vehicles six times – so officials are launching a campaign that will also be rolled out in Vernon and Kelowna to raise safety awareness.

Andrea Katherein, transportation manager for the Okanagan-Shuswap District, said they want people to realize such actions can put children's lives at risk.

“We just want to spread the awareness it is important to stop for our red lights, and the fines are $368 and three demerit points,” said Katherein.

“That is the life of a child they are putting in jeopardy.”

From Feb. 18 to March 1, the district will be holding a safety blitz, part of which will include handing out coffee cup cozies that say 'We stop – You stop.'

Each cozy also reminds people of the hefty fine they can receive for passing a school bus with lights activated.

“The local RCMP will be following our buses on and off,” said Katherein. “We have really good support from our local RCMP detachments.”

Katherein said people not stopping for school buses is a problem from coast to coast.

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