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Hundreds of School Buses Roll Out Tuesday

Passing a stopped school bus on the road could earn you six demerit points, a hefty fine and possible jail time.

School starts Tuesday and Prince William County Public Schools is reminding people that as early as 6 a.m. 825 PWCS buses will on the road. 

As such, PWCS is reminding drivers of the laws surrounding school buses and schools. 

About 63,000 of nearly 84,000 students will be transported by bus, said PWCS. 

"Motorists are reminded that flashing yellow lights in school zones will be on beginning Sept 4," said a release from PWCS. "School zone lights were turned off at most schools in the county during the summer. However, at all locations where summer sessions were held, lights remained operational."

PWCS said in its release that "by law, motorists must stop when a school bus is stopped with its red lights blinking and stop sign extended, except when the bus is on the opposite side of a median strip. Motorists must also stop if the bus is loading or unloading children and the signal devices are not functioning properly."

Passing a stopped school bus is considered reckless driving which is a misdemeanor in Virginia, said the PWCS release. 

"Violators face the possibilities of fines of up to $2,500 and jail time, as well as the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles assessing six demerit points on their driving record for up to 11 years," said the PWCS press release. 

Prince William County Police will also be out on the roads to enforce laws concerning passing a stopped school bus and speeding in a school zone.

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