Pennsylvania Driving Laws and Regulations:
What You Need to Know Can Save Lives
Did you know that Pennsylvania doctors are required by law to report patients who shouldn’t be driving? Did you know that hundreds of children are injured or die from drivers who either didn’t know or just failed to follow the
school bus stopping law? Did you know that pedestrians have to follow laws for safety?
Medically Impaired Driver Law
For many years, Pennsylvania has required doctors to report to PennDOT patients under their care whose driving skills may be affected by a medically related condition. Every year, these doctors play a significant role in PennDOT’s effort of removing medically unsafe drivers from our highways.
According to Section 1518 of the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code all doctors and others authorized to diagnose or treat disorders and disabilities must report to PennDOT within 10 days, in writing, the full name, address, and date of birth of any patient 15 years of age or older, who has been diagnosed as having a condition that could impair his or her ability to safely operate a motor vehicle.
Of course, with at least 46 million people nationwide without health insurance – many unsafe Pennsylvania drivers will fall through the cracks as they may not be attending to their medical needs.
School Bus Stopping Law
Every day over 1.5 million children ride school buses to and from school in Pennsylvania. Every year 346 million miles are covered by Pennsylvania children riding to and from school. Annually, there are over 1,000 Pennsylvania motorists who do not obey the School Bus Stopping Law. Far too many children are injured are killed from motorists just like you who could’ve and should’ve been more observant, more cautious, and more courteous when approaching a school bus.
Do you know when to stop for a school bus?
STOP—When you meet or overtake a stopped school bus with red signal lights flashing and stop arm extended.
STOP—When you approach an intersection where a school bus is stopped with red signal lights flashing and stop arm extended.
STOP—at least ten (10) feet away from the school bus.
STOP—on a roadway with painted lines. You have to stop if you are behind the school bus or coming towards the school bus.
STOP—at an intersection, whether it is or is not marked with a stop sign. All traffic, no matter coming from which direction, must stop.
STOP—on a roadway with grooved or ridge lines. You have to stop if you are behind the school bus or coming towards the school bus.
WAIT—until the red lights have stopped flashing and the stop arm has been withdrawn before moving.
WAIT—until all the children reach a place of safety.
Drivers on divided roads that are divided by a physical barrier do not have to stop if they are driving toward the school bus. Drivers behind the bus must always stop.
When in doubt – STOP.
Hundreds of children’s lives can be saved if drivers just followed these school bus stopping rules.
Driver and Pedestrian Rules
Just because you’re on foot, doesn’t mean that you can do whatever you feel like when you’re walking down the street or wherever there’s traffic. There are rules for pedestrians just as there are rules for drivers. Rules, rules, rules, rules are made to keep pedestrians safe.
Here are a couple of pedestrian rules to remember (you probably already know them)
Follow the directions of a police officer or other appropriately attired people authorized to direct, control or regulate traffic.
Walk on green and stop on red.
When traffic signals are not in place, the driver shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection.
Use your common sense and don’t dart in front of a fast moving vehicle.
Pedestrians crossing a roadway at any point other than within a crosswalk at an intersection or any marked crosswalk shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles.
Yield the right of way to vehicles when using a pedestrian tunnel or overhead crossing.
Do not cross intersections diagonally.
Where a sidewalk is provided; use it. Do not walk on the adjacent roadway.
If a sidewalk is not available, walk only on a shoulder as far as practicable from the edge of the roadway.
If neither a sidewalk nor a shoulder is available, any pedestrian walking along a highway shall walk as near as practicable to an outside edge of the roadway and, if on a two-way roadway, shall walk only on the left side of the roadway.
Pedestrians must never stand on a roadway for the purpose of soliciting a ride.
Pedestrians to yield to authorized emergency vehicles.
Pedestrians under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance shall not walk or be upon a highway except on a sidewalk.
No pedestrian shall pass through, around, over or under any crossing gate or barrier at a railroad grade crossing or bridge while the gate or barrier is closed or is being opened or closed.