*Although not affected by Kadyn's Law, it is important to remember that offenses that cause unintentional serious injury or death to another person and that are charged as operating while intoxicated (OWI), reckless driving, eluding or attempting to elude a law enforcement vehicle, or drag racing may be charged as homicide or serious injury by vehicle, which are class "B" (OWI causing death), "C" (reckless driving or eluding causing death) or "D" (OWI, reckless driving, or eluding causing serious injury; drag racing causing death) felonies. These felonies carry significant higher penalties and sanctions, including fines of up to $10,000, mandatory restitution of $150,000, mandatory imprisonment of 25 years, and mandatory suspension of driving privileges for six years for a class "B" felony conviction.
** The Iowa DOT also has authority under Iowa Code 321.210 and 761 Iowa Administrative Code to suspend the driving privilege of a person convicted for a moving violation that contributed to a fatal motor vehicle accident for at least 120 days. Typical suspensions under this authority are for a period of one year.
Although misdemeanor convictions do not pose the same penalties as felony convictions, they often have other effects on a person's life. Employers often run background checks, and when they do, a misdemeanor is a criminal offense that will appear on the report. A misdemeanor can also cause problems with obtaining security clearances.
Kim Snook, former director of the Iowa DOT's Driver & Identification Services, said, "We hope that these increased penalties and sanctions will make driver's think twice before foolishly choosing to pass a stopped school bus. More than thinking about their own penalty, however, we hope they will remember and recognize that passing a stopped school bus threatens the life of a child. The few seconds gained is not worth risking a child's life."
The Iowa departments of Transportation, Public Safety and Education, and University of Iowa-National Advanced Driving Simulator and Iowa State University-Center for Transportation Research and Education have teamed up to provide additional public education on school bus safety in 2012, as well as to complete a study on school bus safety.