SPRINGFIELD – School buses can now have two extended stop arms under a new law championed by State Senator Doris Turner.

“We have to make sure students are safe while riding school buses,” said Turner (D-Springfield). “Drivers aren’t taking school bus stop signs seriously. Giving school buses the ability to have an additional arm will protect our students and stop reckless drivers from putting kids in danger.”

Turner’s law allows a school bus to be equipped with a maximum of two stop arms that partially obstruct the roadway. The extensions are required to be on the driver's side of the school bus and contain a system of flashing red lights.  

The new law comes in response to school officials across Illinois having seen an increase of instances where people don’t properly stop for a school bus, putting the lives of kids at risk. According to a survey conducted by the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services, 79,959 school bus drivers from around the country reported that 51,593 vehicles had illegally passed their buses on a single day during the 2021-2022 school year.

“Too often, the safety of our students is placed in jeopardy by hurried or distracted drivers,” said Tip Reedy, Superintendent of Williamsville School District. “While we can hire great bus drivers and teach children to look both ways, we can’t control the actions a motorist. We value and appreciate the efforts of Senator Turner and other lawmakers who are taking steps to prevent the occurrence of unsafe and illegal passing of stopped school buses before tragedy occurs.”

Senate Bill 2340 was signed into law Friday.