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Illinois Compiled Statutes

Information maintained by the Legislative Reference Bureau
Updating the database of the Illinois Compiled Statutes (ILCS) is an ongoing process. Recent laws may not yet be included in the ILCS database, but they are found on this site as Public Acts soon after they become law. For information concerning the relationship between statutes and Public Acts, refer to the Guide.

Because the statute database is maintained primarily for legislative drafting purposes, statutory changes are sometimes included in the statute database before they take effect. If the source note at the end of a Section of the statutes includes a Public Act that has not yet taken effect, the version of the law that is currently in effect may have already been removed from the database and you should refer to that Public Act to see the changes made to the current law.

VEHICLES
(625 ILCS 5/) Illinois Vehicle Code.

625 ILCS 5/12-803

    (625 ILCS 5/12-803) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-803)
    Sec. 12-803. (a) Each school bus shall be equipped with a stop signal arm on the driver's side of the school bus that may be operated either manually or mechanically. For each school bus manufactured on and after September 1, 1992, the stop signal arm shall be an octagon shaped semaphore that conforms to 49 C.F.R. 571.131, "SCHOOL BUS PEDESTRIAN SAFETY DEVICES", S5.1 through S5.5.
    (b) Each school bus manufactured prior to September 1, 1992 shall be equipped with a stop signal arm that conforms to standards promulgated by the Department.
(Source: P.A. 88-415.)

625 ILCS 5/12-804

    (625 ILCS 5/12-804) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-804)
    Sec. 12-804. Other vehicles - Color, stop signal arm and identification. No vehicle other than a school bus shall be identified with the sign "SCHOOL BUS", shall be equipped with a stop signal arm, shall be equipped with a strobe lamp or shall be equipped with a warning lamp system as described in Section 12-805 of this Act. No commuter van or bus other than a school bus shall be painted national school bus glossy yellow or a color that closely resembles national school bus glossy yellow.
(Source: P.A. 81-509; 81-740; 81-1509.)

625 ILCS 5/12-805

    (625 ILCS 5/12-805) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-805)
    Sec. 12-805. Special lighting equipment.
    Each school bus purchased as a new vehicle after December 31, 1975 shall be equipped with an 8-lamp flashing signal system. Until December 31, 1978, all other school buses shall be equipped with either a 4-lamp or an 8-lamp flashing signal system. After December 31, 1978, all school buses shall be equipped with an 8-lamp flashing signal system.
    A 4-lamp flashing signal system shall have 2 alternately flashing red lamps mounted as high and as widely spaced laterally on the same level as practicable at the front of the school bus and 2 such lamps mounted in the same manner at the rear.
    An 8-lamp flashing signal system shall have, in addition to a 4-lamp system, 4 alternately flashing amber lamps. Each amber lamp shall be mounted next to a red lamp and at the same level but closer to the centerline of the school bus.
    Each signal lamp shall be a sealed beam at least 5 1/2 inches in diameter and shall have sufficient intensity to be visible at 500 feet in normal sunlight. Both the 4-lamp and 8-lamp system shall be actuated only by means of a manual switch. There shall be a device for indicating to the driver that the system is operating properly or is inoperative.
    A school bus may also be equipped with alternately flashing head lamps, which may be operated in conjunction with the 8-lamp flashing signal system.
(Source: P.A. 93-181, eff. 1-1-04.)

625 ILCS 5/12-806

    (625 ILCS 5/12-806) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-806)
    Sec. 12-806. Identification, stop signal arms and special lighting when not used as a school bus. Except as provided in Section 12-806a, whenever a school bus is operated for the purpose of transporting passengers other than persons in connection with an activity of the school or religious organization which owns the school bus or for which the school bus is operated, the "SCHOOL BUS" signs shall be covered or concealed and the stop signal arm and flashing signal system shall not be operable through normal controls.
(Source: P.A. 84-1311.)

625 ILCS 5/12-806a

    (625 ILCS 5/12-806a) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-806a)
    Sec. 12-806a. Identification, stop signal arms and special lighting on school buses used in connection with a youth camp, child care facility, or community based rehabilitation facility.
    (a) Subject to the conditions in Subsection (c), a bus which meets any of the special requirements for school buses in Section 12-801, 12-802, 12-803 and 12-805 of this Code may be used for the purpose of transporting persons 18 years of age or less in connection with any of the following facilities:
        (i) any youth camp licensed under the Youth Camp Act;
    
and
        (ii) any child care facility licensed under the Child
    
Care Act of 1969.
    (b) Subject to the conditions in subsection (c), a bus which meets any of the special requirements for school buses in Sections 12-801, 12-802, 12-803 and 12-805 of this Code may be used for the purpose of transporting persons recognized as clients of a community based rehabilitation facility which is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities of Tucson, Arizona, and which is under a contractual agreement with the Department of Human Services.
    (c) A bus used for transportation as provided in subsection (a) or (b) shall either (i) meet all of the special requirements for school buses in Section 12-801, 12-802, 12-803 and 12-805 or (ii) shall have the "SCHOOL BUS" signs covered or concealed and the stop signal arm and flashing signal system rendered inoperable through normal means. A bus which meets all of the special requirements for school buses in Section 12-801, 12-802, 12-803 and 12-805 shall be operated by a person who has a valid and properly classified driver's license issued by the Secretary of State and who possesses a valid school bus driver permit or is accompanied and supervised, for the specific purpose of training prior to routine operation of a school bus, by a person who has held a valid school bus driver permit for at least one year. A bus which has had the "SCHOOL BUS" signs covered or concealed and the stop signal arm and flashing signal system rendered inoperable through normal means may be operated by a person who has a valid and properly classified driver's license issued by the Secretary of State.
(Source: P.A. 85-815; 89-507, eff. 7-1-97.)

625 ILCS 5/12-807

    (625 ILCS 5/12-807) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-807)
    Sec. 12-807. Seat belt for driver.
    Each school bus shall be equipped with a retractable lap belt assembly for the driver's seat. No school bus shall be operated unless the driver has properly restrained himself with the lap belt assembly.
(Source: P.A. 78-1244.)

625 ILCS 5/12-807.1

    (625 ILCS 5/12-807.1) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-807.1)
    Sec. 12-807.1. Seat back height. No Type I school bus manufactured after June 30, 1987 shall be sold for use as, or purchased for use as, or used as a school bus within this State unless such bus is equipped with passenger seat backs having a seat back height of 28 inches installed by the original bus body manufacturer.
(Source: P.A. 85-1010.)

625 ILCS 5/12-807.2

    (625 ILCS 5/12-807.2)
    Sec. 12-807.2. Crossing control arms.
    (a) No Type I or Type II school bus may be operated or used as a school bus within this State after December 31, 1999 unless that bus is equipped with a crossing control arm on the front of the bus that conforms to equipment and installation standards that the Department of Transportation shall promulgate for purposes of this subsection.
    (b) If a Type I or Type II school bus is manufactured after December 31, 1997, that bus shall not be sold for use as, or purchased for the use as, or used as a school bus within this State unless that bus is equipped with a crossing control arm that is installed on the front of the bus by the original bus body manufacturer and that conforms to equipment and installation standards that the Department shall promulgate for purposes of this subsection.
    (c) A crossing control arm meeting standards promulgated by the Department under this Section shall be designed to swing out from the front of a school bus when the bus stops and opens its doors while school children enter or exit the bus, as prescribed in rules promulgated by the State Board of Education.
    (d) This Section does not apply to the temporary operation in this State of a school bus that is legally registered in another state and is displaying valid registration plates of that state if (i) the bus is not operated in Illinois on a regular basis, and (ii) the bus is being operated in Illinois in connection with a cultural, tourist, athletic, or similar activity that is sponsored by one or more schools located outside of Illinois for the benefit of their enrolled students who are being transported to or from that activity.
(Source: P.A. 90-108, eff. 7-14-97.)

625 ILCS 5/12-808

    (625 ILCS 5/12-808) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-808)
    Sec. 12-808. Fire extinguisher.
    Each school bus shall be equipped with at least one dry chemical gauge type fire extinguisher mounted in the extinguisher manufacturer's automobile type bracket in a position readily accessible to the driver.
(Source: P.A. 78-1244.)

625 ILCS 5/12-809

    (625 ILCS 5/12-809) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-809)
    Sec. 12-809. First aid kit.
    Each school bus shall be equipped with a first aid kit mounted in full view of and readily accessible to the driver.
(Source: P.A. 78-1244.)

625 ILCS 5/12-810

    (625 ILCS 5/12-810) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-810)
    Sec. 12-810. Restraining devices for passengers who are persons with disabilities. Each school bus which is operated for transporting passengers who are persons with disabilities shall be equipped with an appropriate restraining or safety device for each such passenger.
(Source: P.A. 88-685, eff. 1-24-95.)

625 ILCS 5/12-811

    (625 ILCS 5/12-811) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-811)
    Sec. 12-811. Amber 3 bar clearance light. Each type I school bus shall be equipped with an amber 3 bar clearance light on the front of the bus. The light shall be illuminated at all times when the bus is being operated between sunset and sunrise and in conditions of reduced visibility.
(Source: P.A. 79-63.)

625 ILCS 5/12-812

    (625 ILCS 5/12-812) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-812)
    Sec. 12-812. Rules and regulations. (a) The Department may promulgate rules and regulations to more completely specify the equipment requirements of this Article.
    (b) All rules, regulations and standards promulgated from time to time by the State Board of Education and the Department for the safety and construction of school buses shall be applicable to every motor vehicle in this State defined as a school bus under Section 1-182.
(Source: P.A. 81-1508.)

625 ILCS 5/12-812.1

    (625 ILCS 5/12-812.1) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-812.1)
    Sec. 12-812.1. (a) The Department shall adopt and promulgate rules and regulations governing the use of liquefied petroleum gases, compressed natural gases and liquefied natural gases as a propellant fuel in school buses. Such rules and regulations shall include the installation, maintenance and operation of such equipment installed on school buses and shall be based on the generally accepted standards of safety as recommended by the National Fire Protection Association.
    (b) All school buses using liquefied petroleum gases, compressed natural gases or liquefied natural gases as a propellant fuel must conform to and obey any rule or regulation lawfully adopted by the Department.
(Source: P.A. 83-1027.)

625 ILCS 5/12-813.1

    (625 ILCS 5/12-813.1)
    Sec. 12-813.1. School bus driver communication devices.
    (a) In this Section:
    "School bus driver" means a person operating a school bus who has a valid school bus driver permit as required under Sections 6-104 and 6-106.1 of this Code.
    "Cellular radio telecommunication device" means a device capable of sending or receiving telephone communications without an access line for service and which requires the operator to dial numbers manually. It does not, however, include citizens band radios or citizens band radio hybrids.
    "Possession of a school bus" means the period of time from which a bus driver takes possession until the school bus driver returns possession of the school bus, whether or not the school bus driver is operating the school bus.
    "Using a cellular radio telecommunication device" means talking or listening to or dialing a cellular radio telecommunication device.
    To "operate" means to have the vehicle in motion while it contains one or more passengers.
    (b) A school bus driver may not operate a school bus while using a cellular radio telecommunication device.
    (c) Subsection (b) of this Section does not apply:
        (1) To the use of a cellular radio telecommunication
    
device for the purpose of communicating with any of the following regarding an emergency situation:
            (A) an emergency response operator;
            (B) a hospital;
            (C) a physician's office or health clinic;
            (D) an ambulance service;
            (E) a fire department, fire district, or fire
        
company; or
            (F) a police department.
        (2) To the use of a cellular radio telecommunication
    
device to call for assistance in the event that there is a mechanical breakdown or other mechanical problem that impairs the safe operation of the bus or to communicate with school authorities or their designees about any other issue relating to the operation of the school bus or the welfare and safety of any passenger thereon. In no case may a cellular radio telecommunication device be used for anything not provided for in this Section, including but not limited to, personal use.
        (3) (Blank).
        (4) When the school bus is parked.
    (d) A school bus driver who violates subsection (b) of this Section is guilty of a petty offense punishable by a fine of not less than $100 and not more than $250.
    (e) A school bus must contain either an operating cellular radio telecommunication device or two-way radio while the school bus driver is in possession of a school bus. The cellular radio telecommunication device or two-way radio in this subsection must be turned on and adjusted in a manner that would alert the school bus driver of an incoming communication request.
(Source: P.A. 96-818, eff. 11-17-09; 96-1066, eff. 7-16-10.)

625 ILCS 5/12-815

    (625 ILCS 5/12-815) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-815)
    Sec. 12-815. Strobe lamp on school bus.
    (a) A school bus manufactured prior to January 1, 2000 may be equipped with one strobe lamp that will emit 60 to 120 flashes per minute of white or bluish-white light visible to a motorist approaching the bus from any direction. A school bus manufactured on or after January 1, 2000 shall be equipped with one strobe lamp that will emit 60 to 120 flashes per minute of white or bluish-white light visible to a motorist approaching the bus from any direction. The lamp shall be of sufficient brightness to be visible in normal sunlight when viewed directly from a distance of at least one mile.
    (b) The strobe lamp shall be mounted on the rooftop of the bus with the light generating element in the lamp located equidistant from each side and either at or behind the center of the rooftop. The maximum height of the element above the rooftop shall not exceed 1/30 of its distance from the rear of the rooftop. If the structure of the strobe lamp obscures the light generating element, the element shall be deemed to be in the center of the lamp with a maximum height 1/4 inch less than the maximum height of the strobe lamp unless otherwise indicated in rules and regulations promulgated by the Department. The Department may promulgate rules and regulations to govern measurements, glare, effectiveness and protection of strobe lamps on school buses, including higher strobe lamps than authorized in this paragraph.
    (c) The strobe lamp may be lighted only when the school bus is actually being used as a school bus and:
        1. is stopping or stopped for loading or discharging
    
pupils on a highway outside an urban area; or
        2. is bearing one or more pupils.
(Source: P.A. 95-319, eff. 8-21-07.)

625 ILCS 5/12-815.1

    (625 ILCS 5/12-815.1)
    Sec. 12-815.1. Emergency exits identification. On and after August 1, 2000, all emergency exits of a school bus shall be outlined around the perimeter of the exit with a minimum one inch wide yellow reflective tape or decal. This yellow reflective tape or decal shall be placed on the exterior surface of the school bus.
(Source: P.A. 91-168, eff. 1-1-00; 91-785, eff. 6-9-00.)

625 ILCS 5/12-815.2

    (625 ILCS 5/12-815.2)
    Sec. 12-815.2. Noise suppression switch. Any school bus manufactured on or after January 1, 2006 must be equipped with a noise suppression switch capable of turning off noise producing accessories, including: heater blowers; defroster fans; auxiliary fans; and radios.
(Source: P.A. 94-519, eff. 8-10-05.)

625 ILCS 5/12-816

    (625 ILCS 5/12-816)
    Sec. 12-816. Pre and post-trip inspection policy for school buses.
    (a) In order to provide for the welfare and safety of children who are transported on school buses throughout the State of Illinois, each school district shall have in place, by January 1, 2008, a policy to ensure that the school bus driver is the last person leaving the bus and that no passenger is left behind or remains on the vehicle at the end of a route, a work shift, or the work day. This policy and procedure shall, at a minimum, require the school bus driver (i) to test the cellular radio telecommunication device or two-way radio and ensure that it is functioning properly before the bus is operated and (ii) before leaving the bus at the end of each route, work shift, or work day, to walk to the rear of the bus and check the bus for children or other passengers in the bus.
    (b) If a school district has a contract with a private sector school bus company for the transportation of the district's students, the school district shall require in the contract with the private sector company that the company have a post-trip inspection policy in place. This policy and procedure shall, at a minimum, require the school bus driver (i) to test the cellular radio telecommunication device or two-way radio and ensure that it is functioning properly before the bus is operated and (ii) before leaving the bus at the end of each route, work shift, or work day, to walk to the rear of the bus and check the bus for children or other passengers in the bus.
    (c) Before this inspection, the school bus driver shall activate the interior lights of the bus to assist the driver in seeing in and under the seats during a visual sweep of the bus.
    (d) This policy may include, at the discretion of the school district, the installation of a mechanical or electronic post-trip inspection reminder system which requires the school bus driver to walk to the rear of the bus to deactivate the system before the driver leaves the bus. The system shall require that when the driver turns off the vehicle's ignition system, the vehicle's interior lights must illuminate to assist the driver in seeing in and under the seats during a visual sweep of the bus.
(Source: P.A. 95-260, eff. 8-17-07; 96-818, eff. 11-17-09; 96-1066, eff. 7-16-10.)

625 ILCS 5/12-820

    (625 ILCS 5/12-820) (from Ch. 95 1/2, par. 12-820)
    Sec. 12-820. Nursery school buses. The Department of Transportation, after conducting a Public Hearing, may, by regulation, modify and supplement the requirements pertaining to seat dimensions, spacing and height from the floor and to other safety features in the interior of a school bus used to transport preschool children, when such modification or supplementing will enhance the safety of the bus when transporting such children.
(Source: P.A. 85-828.)