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What is the law regarding a school bus using a state-maintained road to back up and turn around?

Austin Suther

According to the North Carolina School Bus Driver Handbook, there are three ways a school bus should turn around.

The first is a forward turn around, which means the bus should use a safe area such as a parking lot, allowing the driver to move in a wide circle to turn around.

The latter two are more like three-point turns. They are a right side road turn around and a left side road turn around. These require a driver to use a side road on their left or right side, drive far enough past it so that they can back up into it, then pull to the lane they wish to travel.

Some additional rules are listed in the handbook:

  • Turn around only at places designated by the principal.
  • Always keep the bus in the proper lane of travel.
  • Observe all the precautions for backing. If you must turn the bus around by backing at a passenger stop, make sure all the passengers are on the bus when you back.
  • If you are loading passengers at the turn around point, load them onto the bus before turning around. If you are unloading passengers at the turn around point, unload after turning around.
  • Inform school transportation officials of any turn around problems you notice on your route.

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