On Wednesday, April 18, the Grand Island Central School District participated in Operation Safe Stop, a statewide effort to help ensure that motorists stop for the school bus. Grand Island Town Police, Erie County Sheriff's Office and New York State Police followed school buses on morning routes that are scheduled along busy roads and bus routes where school bus drivers have reported problems.
Motorists pass stopped school buses most times because they are distracted, not paying attention and in some cases because they want to "beat" the bus. Knowing the problem, GICSD school buses have roof-mounted strobe lights to provide early warning that there is a school bus ahead, and replacement buses are equipped with LED flashing red and yellow strobe lights that leave no doubt that the school bus is stopping or is stopped to load or unload children. Although not required to do so, Grand Island school bus drivers will try to pull over when possible, to let motorists that are behind the bus, to go around the bus. By pulling the bus over, Grand Island residents know that they won't be "stuck," resulting in increased compliance that helps keep students safe.
Pictured, from left, at the district bus garage are Grand Island Transportation Head Bus Driver Kelly Lesinski, Trooper Brian McCloud, Grand Island Transportation Supervisor, Jack Burns, Grand Island Town Supervisor Mary Cooke, Erie County Sheriff's Deputy Angela Kopacz, Officer Bob Rine, Officer Keith Wood and Deputy Timothy Higgins. (photo by Tim Blevins)