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Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

  

                         Laws of Minnesota 1989 

                        CHAPTER 204-S.F.No. 163 
           An act relating to traffic regulations; regulating 
          U-turns; providing for color and equipment 
          requirements on school buses carrying ten or more 
          persons; establishing conditions under which school 
          bus drivers must activate flashing amber lights; 
          providing for bumper requirements on private passenger 
          vehicles and rear-end protection for other vehicles; 
          providing for strength requirements of wheelchair 
          securement devices; amending Minnesota Statutes 1988, 
          sections 169.19, subdivision 2; 169.44, subdivisions 
          1a and 2; 169.73; 299A.12; and 299A.13, subdivision 1. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1988, section 169.19, 
subdivision 2, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 2.  [U-TURNS.] No vehicle shall be turned so as to 
proceed in the opposite direction upon any curve, or upon the 
approach to or near the the crest of a grade, where such vehicle 
cannot be seen by the driver of any other vehicle approaching 
from either direction within 1,000 feet, nor shall the driver of 
a vehicle turn the vehicle so as to proceed in the opposite 
direction unless the movement can be made safely and without 
interfering with other traffic. 
    Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1988, section 169.44, 
subdivision 1a, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 1a.  [EQUIPMENT AND COLOR REQUIREMENTS.] Every school 
bus with a seating capacity in excess of 16 ten persons and 
every vehicle purchased for delivery after April 1, 1977 for use 
in the state of Minnesota as a school bus, with a seating 
capacity in excess of ten persons including the driver, shall be 
equipped with a stop signal arm, prewarning flashing amber 
signals and flashing red signals.  Every new school bus 
purchased for delivery after June 1, 1973, for use in the state 
of Minnesota as a school bus with a seating capacity in excess 
of 16 ten persons and every new vehicle purchased for delivery 
after April 1, 1977 for use in the state of Minnesota as a 
school bus, with a seating capacity in excess of ten persons 
including the driver, shall be of a uniform color, national 
school bus glossy yellow.  Any school bus substantially 
repainted after June 1, 1973 shall be painted national school 
bus glossy yellow.  Any school bus or vehicle which satisfies 
these equipment and color requirements and which bears signs 
containing the words "school bus" as provided in subdivision 3 
shall be deemed to be outwardly equipped and identified as a 
school bus for purposes of this section.  
     Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1988, section 169.44, 
subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 2.  [LOADING AND UNLOADING PASSENGERS; USE OF 
SIGNALS.] (a) Drivers A driver of a vehicle outwardly equipped 
and identified as a school bus shall actuate the prewarning 
flashing amber signals of the bus before stopping to load or 
unload a school child or children.  The driver shall actuate the 
flashing amber signals at least 100 feet before stopping in a 
speed zone of 35 miles per hour or less and at least 300 feet 
when operating outside an incorporated municipality and at least 
100 feet when operating within an incorporated municipality and, 
before stopping in a speed zone of more than 35 miles per hour.  
Upon stopping for such this purpose, such drivers the driver 
shall extend the stop signal arm and actuate the flashing red 
signals and shall not retract the stop signal arm and extinguish 
the flashing red signals until loading or unloading is completed 
and persons who must cross the street or highway are safely 
across. 
    (b) School bus drivers shall not actuate the prewarning 
flashing amber signals or flashing red signals: 
    (1) in special school bus loading areas where the bus is 
entirely off the traveled portion of the road; 
    (2) in residence or business districts of cities except 
when directed by the local school administrator; 
    (3) when a school bus is being used on a highway for 
purposes other than the actual transportation of school children 
to or from school or a school approved activity, in which event 
the words "school bus" on the front and rear of the bus shall be 
removed or completely concealed; 
    (4) at railroad grade crossings; and 
    (5) when loading and unloading persons while the bus is 
completely off the traveled portion of a separated, one-way 
roadway that has adequate shoulders.  The driver shall drive the 
bus completely off the traveled portion of a separated, one-way 
roadway with adequate shoulders before loading or unloading 
persons. 
    (c) Where school children must cross the road before 
boarding or after being discharged from the bus, the driver of a 
school bus or a school bus patrol may supervise such crossings 
making use of the standard school patrol flag or signal as 
approved and prescribed by the commissioner of public safety.  
When children are alighting from a school bus, the driver shall 
visually ascertain that alighting children shall be a safe 
distance from the bus before moving the bus. 
    (d) Vehicles not outwardly equipped and identified as 
school buses shall load or unload school children only from the 
right-hand side of the vehicle, except on a one-way street such 
vehicle shall load or unload school children only from the curb 
side of the vehicle. 
    Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 1988, section 169.73, is 
amended to read:  
    169.73 [BUMPERS, SAFEGUARDS.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [DEFINITIONS.] As used in this section 
"private passenger vehicle" means a four-wheeled passenger 
automobile as defined in section 168.011, but does not include a 
collector vehicle or collector military vehicle as defined in 
section 168.10, a station wagon subdivision 7; a van as defined 
in section 168.011, subdivision 28; a pickup truck as defined in 
section 168.011, subdivision 29; and a jeep-type automobile or 
other multipurpose vehicle or a truck with a manufacturer's 
rated capacity of 2,000 pounds or less.  "Private passenger 
vehicle" does not include a collector vehicle or collector 
military vehicle as defined in section 168.10.  
    "Suspension system" includes both the front and rear wheels 
and tires of a vehicle as specified in subdivision 3. 
    Subd. 2.  [BUMPER REQUIREMENT.] All private passenger 
vehicles shall be equipped with front and rear bumpers, except 
that pickup trucks and vans shall be equipped with front bumpers 
and with either rear bumpers or reflectors. 
    Subd. 3.  [BUMPER RESTRICTIONS.] No person shall operate 
a private passenger automobile, station wagon, jeep type 
automobile, or truck with a manufacturer's rated capacity of 
2,000 pounds or less vehicle that:  (a) was originally equipped 
with bumpers as standard equipment, unless the vehicle is 
equipped with bumpers equal to the original equipment; or (b) 
has a suspension system or body so modified that the height of 
the vehicle or any bumpers varies more than six inches from the 
original manufactured height for the vehicle.  
    Subd. 4.  [MAXIMUM BUMPER HEIGHT.] Notwithstanding the 
restrictions contained in subdivision 3, bumpers required under 
this section shall not exceed a height of (1) 20 inches on any 
passenger automobile or station wagon or (2) 25 inches on any 
four-wheel drive multipurpose type vehicle, van as defined in 
section 168.011, subdivision 28, or pickup truck having a 
manufacturer's rated capacity of 2,000 pounds or less as defined 
in section 168.011, subdivision 29, when the vehicle is being 
operated on a public highway.  The height of the bumper shall be 
determined by measuring from the bottom of the bumper, excluding 
any vertical bumper attachments, to the ground.  A vehicle which 
has an original bumper which does not exceed a height of 30 
inches may be modified by attaching a full width bumper to the 
regular bumper to meet the height requirement.  The attached 
bumper must be at least 4.5 inches in vertical height, be 
centered on the vehicle's centerline, extend at least ten inches 
on either side of the frame, and be attached to the frame in at 
least four places with angle braces at no less than 45 degrees 
so that it effectively transfers impact to an extent equal to or 
greater than the original bumper.  
    Competent evidence that a vehicle was originally 
manufactured with bumpers higher than prescribed in this 
subdivision shall be an affirmative defense in any action under 
this section.  
    Subd. 4a.  [REAR-END PROTECTION FOR OTHER 
VEHICLES.] Vehicles other than private passenger vehicles, 
collector vehicles, collector military vehicles, and other 
vehicles specifically exempted by law from such requirements 
must meet the rear-end protection requirements of federal motor 
carrier regulations, Code of Federal Regulations, title 49, 
section 393.86.  
    Subd. 5.  [PENALTY.] Any person who violates this section 
is guilty of a misdemeanor. 
     Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 1988, section 299A.12, is 
amended to read:  
    299A.12 [WHEELCHAIR SECUREMENT DEVICES.] 
    Subdivision 1.  Any vehicle used by an operator to provide 
transportation service shall be equipped with wheelchair 
securement devices which are approved by the commissioner of 
public safety as meeting the specifications of this 
subdivision subdivisions 1 and 2.  A wheelchair securement 
device shall prevent any forward, backward or lateral movement 
of an occupied wheelchair when the device is engaged and the 
vehicle is in motion, accelerating or braking, and shall attach 
to the frame of the wheelchair without damaging it. Wheelchair 
securement devices installed in any vehicle shall be maintained 
in working order. 
    Subd. 2.  The strength requirements for securing the part 
of a wheelchair that is forward in the vehicle shall be one half 
of those required for the rear.  Where the wheelchair securement 
device and the seat belt are combined in a common system, those 
parts which provide the combined restraining force shall have a 
combined strength of both according to the strength requirements 
of each as adopted by the commissioner of public safety.  
     Subd. 3.  A vehicle used to provide transportation service 
shall carry only as many persons seated in wheelchairs as the 
number of securement devices approved by the commissioner of 
public safety as meeting the specifications of subdivision 
subdivisions 1 and 2 with which the vehicle is equipped, and 
each occupied wheelchair shall be secured by such a securement 
device before the vehicle is set in motion. 
    Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 1988, section 299A.13, 
subdivision 1, is amended to read:  
    Subdivision 1.  Any vehicle used to provide transportation 
service shall be equipped with seat belts which are approved by 
the commissioner of public safety. The seat belts required by 
this subdivision shall be adequate to secure the occupant of a 
wheelchair who is being transported by the vehicle.  These seat 
belts shall be used only to secure the person and shall not be 
used to secure the wheelchair unless the wheelchair securement 
force is not cumulative to the seat belt.  The seat belts shall 
meet all other applicable state and federal requirements for 
safety. 
    Presented to the governor May 18, 1989 
    Signed by the governor May 19, 1989, 12:20 a.m.