Scary Moment in Standish as Driver Passes School Bus as Student is Exiting
A careless driver who was apparently impatient with a stopped school bus in Standish decided to break the law and pass the bus. Sadly, that's not the first time something like this has happened, but this driver passed the bus on the left side on the shoulder of the road, as the doors were open and a child was about to step off.
The video was of the incident was caught on a security camera by the family and shared on Facebook by Alicia Hodgkin, the aunt of the girl who was about to get off the bus when the driver was passing on the left.
According to WGME, bus driver Tina Dippolito prevented what could have been a tragic accident when she acted quickly and stopped the girl from stepping off the bus when she saw the driver passing.
WMTW says, that thanks to the video that captured the reckless driver, the Cumberland County Sheriff's Office has identified the vehicle and they now have a suspect.
This is a big problem in Maine as you can see in this video of another driver passing a stopped school bus captured on video by Windham Power Sports on Roosevelt Trail in 2019.
Here's the problem that needs to be fixed. The penalty in Maine for passing a stopped school bus is pretty minor. Offenders receive a $250 minimum fine for the first offense and a mandatory 30-day suspension of a driver's license for a second offense occurring within three years of the first offense. That's the best we can do Maine?
Big praise to the driver for seeing the approaching car and stopping the girl. She's a hero, but it's time to get tough on drivers who pass a stopped school bus. This kind of crime is on the level of operating under the influence. We got tough on drunk driving. Let's do the same on passing stopped school buses and do what we can to make our children in Maine that much safer.