Learn about school bus and school zone safety

School bus safety

Be aware, drive safely and help protect our school children

When you're driving along a street, undivided highway or roadway in any direction you must stop when you approach a stopped school bus with its upper red lights flashing.

If the highway or roadway is physically divided by a median into two separate roadways, only the drivers approaching from the rear must stop.

Once all the passengers have boarded or departed the bus and it's safe to proceed, the upper red lights will stop flashing. Do not start moving until:

  • the red lights have stopped flashing; and
  • the bus begins to move.

Road safety: crosswalks

When you're driving in or around school zones, watch for students and pedestrians crossing the street.

If you have to park near a school, make sure your vehicle is parked at least:

  • 15 metres back from marked crosswalks; or
  • 10 metres past marked crosswalks.

Parking too close to a crosswalk can obstruct a driver’s view and make it dangerous for pedestrians.

Do not park near marked crosswalks. Not even for a minute.

Children and road safety

For young children just starting or returning to school, here are a few reminders. These will help children stay safe on their way to and from school every day.

Be visible

Whether they're using a crosswalk or stepping on the road to board their bus, it’s important for kids to remember drivers do not always stop for them.

Children should be aware that drivers may not always see them and, even if they do, the driver may not be able to stop their vehicle in time.

Stop and look

The most important thing for young children to remember is that they should always stop and look both ways before crossing the road.

Drive with caution

Young children are still learning road safety rules and sometimes do unexpected things.

Be prepared for the unexpected

Drivers should:

  • drive with caution near school crosswalks;
  • stop for school buses when red lights are flashing; and
  • reduce your speed to 30 kilometres an hour in school zones.


When are school zones in effect?

School zones are in effect when children are in class Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

School zones are not in effect when students are not in class:

  • outside regular hours (4:31 p.m. to 7:59 a.m.);
  • weekends;
  • PD days;
  • holidays (including Christmas and spring break); and
  • summer.

Each school sets its own calendar, so closures may not align from school to school. If you’re unsure, it’s best to assume the school zone is in effect. Learn more about school calendars and holiday dates.


For more information contact the Road Safety Unit by email at [email protected], or by calling 867-667-5832 or toll free 1-800-661-0408, extension 5832.