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Texas drivers urged to use care near school buses

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Some Texas troopers will be trailing school buses or on board to make sure other drivers use care near the vehicles hauling children to and from classes.

The Texas Department of Public Safety operation began Monday as part of National School Bus Safety Week. State education officials say more than 40,000 school buses transport 1.5 million Texas children every school day.

DPS urged drivers to obey state law by not passing any school bus that is stopped and operating a visual signal - either flashing red lights or a stop sign. Violators could face fines as much as $1,250.

Texas troopers during 2012 issued 449 tickets for passing a stopped school bus. State transportation officials say 840 traffic accidents last year involved school buses.

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