Barbour signs school bus safety bill

By The Associated Press

JACKSON — Republican Gov. Haley Barbour has signed into law a school bus safety bill drafted in response to a Jones County child’s death.

The bill, known as Nathan’s Law, would require motorists to stay at least 10 feet from a stopped school bus. Violators could be fined up to $750 for a first offense. On a second offense, violators face a fine and up to a year in prison.

The bill also would prohibit school bus drivers from using cell phones while transporting children, except in cases of emergency.

This is the second year legislators considered bills named in honor of Nathan Key, a 5-year-old killed in 2009 after he got off a school bus.

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The bill is Senate Bill 2472.