SENATE BILL 6481
State of Washington 52nd Legislature 1992 Regular Session
By Senators Bailey, Murray, Craswell, Erwin, Oke, Thorsness and Skratek
Read first time 02/05/92. Referred to Committee on Education.
AN ACT Relating to warning lights on school buses; and amending RCW 46.37.190.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
Sec. 1. RCW 46.37.190 and 1987 c 330 s 710 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) Every authorized emergency vehicle shall, in addition to any other equipment and distinctive marking required by this chapter, be equipped with at least one lamp capable of displaying a red light visible from at least five hundred feet in normal sunlight and a siren capable of giving an audible signal.
(2) Every school bus and private carrier bus shall, in addition to any other equipment and distinctive markings required by this chapter, be equipped with a "stop" signal upon a background not less than fourteen by eighteen inches displaying the word "stop" in letters of distinctly contrasting colors not less than eight inches high, and shall further be equipped with signal lamps mounted as high and as widely spaced laterally as practicable, which shall be capable of displaying to the front two alternately flashing red lights located at the same level and to the rear two alternately flashing red lights located at the same level and these lights shall have sufficient intensity to be visible at five hundred feet in normal sunlight.
(3)(a) A school bus may be equipped with a single hazard strobe lamp. The lamp must meet the standards and specifications established by the chief of the Washington state patrol and must be mounted on the centerline of the roof in the rear one-half of the bus, but no closer than six feet from the rear of the bus measured from a vertical plane tangent to the rearmost point of the bus body.
(b) A hazard strobe lamp may be used when the bus is occupied with school children or when one or more of the following conditions exist:
(i) The bus is in motion in inclement, sight-obscuring conditions, including but not limited to, rain, fog, snow, and smoke;
(ii) There is a need to improve the visibility of the bus when stopping on, standing on, or starting onto a highway; or
(iii) There is limited visibility caused by geographic hazards, including but not limited to, winding roadways, hills, trees, and buildings.
(4) Vehicles operated by public agencies whose law enforcement duties include the authority to stop and detain motor vehicles on the public highways of the state may be equipped with a siren and lights of a color and type designated by the state patrol for that purpose. The state patrol may prohibit the use of these sirens and lights on vehicles other than the vehicles described in this subsection.
(5) The lights described in this section shall not be mounted nor used
on any vehicle other than a school bus, a private carrier bus, or an authorized
emergency or law enforcement vehicle. Optical strobe light devices shall not
be installed or used on any vehicle other than an emergency vehicle authorized
by the state patrol or a publicly-owned law enforcement or emergency vehicle.
An "optical strobe light device" means a strobe light device which
emits an optical signal at a specific frequency to a traffic control light
enabling the vehicle in which the strobe light device is used to obtain the
right of way at intersections.
(6) The use of the signal equipment described herein shall impose upon
drivers of other vehicles the obligation to yield right of way and stop as
prescribed in RCW 46.61.210, 46.61.370, and 46.61.350.