CAUGHT ON VIDEO: Driver illegally passes Kennewick school bus
TRI-CITIES, Wash. -- When the yellow lights are blinking and the red paddle pops out, most of drivers know what to do.
The problem is, local bus drivers say many drivers aren’t stopping- putting children’s lives at risk.
Tuesday, Action News caught one driver on camera breaking the law.
"Four cars are stopped behind me and I see a car coming up to my left and I don't see them slowing down, so I know they're going to run it," said Jennifer Wilson, a bus driver for the Kennewick School District.
Wilson has been a bus driver for three years.
She says drivers are always passing her when they shouldn't be.
"If I see that they're going to run the paddle, my window is usually open. If not, I open up my window and my arm goes out. Sometimes I honk my horn and give them a warning and they just continue on. It doesn't even phase them," said Wilson.
Often she'll see that the driver is distracted or on their phone.
"Parents are waiting to pick up their kids or drop them off and they're seeing it. It’s scary to them and they’re thinking is my child safe when they’re getting on the school bus?" said Wilson.
Linda Chavez is one of those concerned parents.
"It's frustrating because I have seen it happen multiple times. Out of ten times, maybe eight," said Chavez.
Linda's daughter, Diana, rides the bus that the car whipped past earlier.
"When your child gets on the bus, you expect your kids to arrive safely. When there's drivers out there that aren't being cautious, it makes you worry. Is your child going to come home safe? Is your child going to get to school okay? It's just a big concern for me," said Chavez.
That's why she walks Diana to and from the bus stop.
But she hopes drivers will keep her daughter in mind next time they decide to blow past a bus.
If the yellow lights are flashing- that means slow down.
If the paddle is out, you have to stop behind it.
"They just need to slow down, pay attention and stop. Let these kids get home safely," said Wilson.
Police say if you're caught passing a bus, it could be a fine of $400.