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School bus light colours in your jurisdiction

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When I was a kid (1970s and 1980s), the lights were red only here. I don’t know when they switched to red and yellow, but they’ve been that way for quite a long time, probably since sometime in the 1990s.

When I was a kid the buses also didn’t all have the swing-out stop sign until sometime in the 1980s, and the flat-front buses showed up in the late 1980s when I was in high school after studies found the hood obstructed the driver's view of little kids who might be in front of the bus.

Big John:
^^ About the time they put a swing out bar in the front of the bus so kids could not go directly in front of the bus.

Echoing what others have said, I've only ever seen active school buses with both yellow and red lights as far back as I can recall.

I started Kindergarten in 1980, and I never knew anything else but red & yellow lights.

I don't remember the swing bar when I went to school, because I'm sure I would've walked into it a few times.  I think that came after 1993.  Same thing with the STOP sign that swung out.  (And NJ only requires 1, not 2, stop signs on school buses). 

Relatively recently the state required the white strobe on the top of the bus, which I find useless.

We also walked to the bus stop about 1/4 mile (5 minutes) away at a T-intersection in the neighborhood in elementary school.  After we got on the bus, it backed up into the T where we feared the bus driver would back into a drainage ditch off the side of the road and we'll roll over (which was, in hindsight, a really small ditch and we definitely wouldn't have rolled over).  All stuff that's rare or prohibited now.

Buses in Oklahoma still don't have the swing bar.

I used to like to sit behind the bus driver when I was a little kid, and was fascinated by the great big bank of switches that the driver had access to. One of these was the one that controlled the yellow flashers. There were also a bunch of spaces for switches that were labeled, but our buses didn't have, so there was no switch there. Some of them seemed quite fantastical, like "heated crosswalk".

Every once in a while I would ask if I could open the door when we reached my stop. The door open mechanism was this handle that swung 180° and had a linkage that pulled the bifold door open and closed. This was a really interesting bit of machinery to me at the time. I wouldn't be surprised if, these days, it was motorized and controlled by the push of a button. Hell, the whole switch bank is probably just a touchscreen now, sadly.


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