LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) — A concerned couple wants to raise awareness about bus stop safety after they said their son could've been hit by a car on the morning of Feb. 6.
Jonathan and Michelle Walterhouse said they have a bone to pick with the drivers in their neighborhood, Walton Heights.
“Our son was waiting to get on the bus at about 7:40 a.m. and two cars passed as the bus was coming up with its yellow lights on and then the bus driver put out the stop sign and this lady just blew on right past,” they said.
They said they’ve also experienced the same thing with their daughter Aiden, who has special needs.
“We have a special bus that stops to pick her up and they pull right up in front of the house to let the ramp down on the driveway. It's very scary when you think about our daughter is on the ramp in a wheelchair as people are trying to go past the bus sometimes,” they said.
The couple said they feel helpless.
“There's really nothing we can do besides bring this to light to other people; you stop at a stop sign if there's a stop sign out on a bus, I would think you’d stop for that too,” they said.
The Little Rock Police Department says they get complaints like this all the time. Officer Steve Moore sent THV11 the exact state law:
When a school bus stops and displays its alternating red warning lights for the purpose of loading or unloading passengers, every car from any direction must come to a complete stop before reaching the school bus. Also, the operator of the car cannot start up or attempt to pass in any direction until the school bus has finished picking up or dropping off its passengers and is in motion again.
“We've taught them that you have to look both ways and to not cross that road until everyone has stopped and I think that's what ultimately saved my son's life this morning,” they said.
The Little Rock police said if they get a couple of complaints in a specific area, they'll assign patrol officers to monitor the bus stop and if complaints continue to pile up, motorcycle units will be assigned to keep a closer watch.