1. Every school bus except private passenger vehicles used as school buses shall be constructed and equipped to meet safety standards prescribed in rules adopted by the state board of education. Such rules shall conform to safety standards set forth in federal laws and regulations and shall conform, insofar as practicable, to the minimum standards for school buses recommended by the national conference on school transportation administered by the national commission on safety education and published by the national education association.
2. Rules prescribed for school buses shall provide standards for structural strength, materials, and insulation of the school bus body; color; seat and aisle arrangement; dimension and construction of service door; control of the front door or doors; emergency door and its location and construction; windows; roof ventilators; heaters; location, filling, and draining of the fuel tank; bumpers and how they shall be attached to the bus; lettering and identification of the bus; stop signal arm; warning lights and flashing lights.
3. The rules prescribed for school buses shall include special rules for passenger automobiles, and other vehicles designed to carry eight or fewer pupils, when used as school buses.
4. Every school bus shall be equipped with a comfortable seat for each child.
5. Vehicles owned by private parties and used as school buses shall have reversed or covered the words “school bus” wherever they appear on the vehicle when the vehicle is not in use as a school bus. It shall be unlawful to operate flashing stop warning signals on such privately owned vehicles except as provided in section 321.372.
6. No vehicle except a school bus shall be operated on a public highway if the vehicle is painted the color known as national school bus glossy yellow. A school bus which has been permanently converted for a purpose other than transporting pupils to or from school shall be painted a color other than national school bus glossy yellow, and shall have the “school bus” signs, stop arm, and the special signal lamps removed.
7. A school bus may be equipped with a white flashing strobe light mounted on the roof of the bus to afford optimum visibility during periods of inclement weather. The light shall be installed and operated in accordance with rules promulgated by the department of education. Each new school bus put into initial service after January 1, 1977, shall be equipped with such a light.
8. A person who violates this section commits a simple misdemeanor.
[C31, 35, §5079-c9, -c10, -c11; C39, §5032.02; C46, 50, 54, 58, 62, 66, 71, 73, 75, 77, 79, 81, §321.373]
97 Acts, ch 108, §19; 2010 Acts, ch 1140, §10
Referred to in §282.8, §321.378, §321.379, §321.380, §321.423, §331.653