Peoria police watching for people who run school bus stop signs

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PEORIA -- The Peoria police and Peoria Unified School District are stepping up enforcement when it comes to people obeying stop signs on school buses.

"We're putting a uniformed officer on the bus while the bus driver makes his rounds," explained Mike Tellef of the Peoria Police Department. "If the officer sees somebody failing to stop for the sign, he's going to radio to the motor officers that in the area. Those motorcycle officers will stop that person and [the driver] will get a citation for failing to stop for the stop sign."

The operation, which started a couple of weeks ago, is funded by a grant from the Governor's Office of Highway Safety.

Tellef said officers will be on the buses at different times of the day and on different days each week. The operation will run through the end of the school year.

"We have certain routes that we have picked because the reports have been very, very high from the public, from the bus drivers and our officers' observations," Tellef explained.

3TV's Bruce Haffner asked veteran school bus driver Linda Collins how many people she has seen run the stop signs in her 15 years behind the wheel.

"That's a scary number," she said.

The fine for running a stop sign on a school bus is $646.