Do you know that according to the US Department of Transportation, more than 67,000 bus crashes and accidents occur annually? Many students and parents wonder, “Is the bus safe to travel?” Yes, indeed, buses are safer than motorcycles, cars, and bicycles. But they require the same safety precautions as you would practice on other modes of transportation.
School Bus Safety Tips
It is essential for parents and students to understand that getting to the bus stop, sitting on the bus, and getting on and off the vehicle must be done responsibly. Most serious accidents occur when the child is outside the bus. Here is a general overview of the most important school bus safety tips for parents and students;
For the Parents;
- Parents are responsible for getting their children safely to and from the bus stop.
- Always supervise the children until they are at least 10 years old.
- Hold the hand of the child when walking towards or away from the bus stop.
- Hold the child’s hand properly when crossing roads.
- When you are waiting for the bus, it is safer to stand as far back from the traffic as possible while holding the child’s hand.
For the Students;
- As soon as you get on the bus, take a seat quickly, and buckle up.
- Place your bags on your lap or under the seat.
- Keep your hands, arms, and head inside the bus AT ALL TIMES.
- Do not throw any objects outside the bus.
Other School Bus Safety Tips;
- Parents and students must be extra vigilant while getting off the bus.
- Parents must meet the children at the bus stop.
- Parents must never call the children on the opposite side of the road where they are waiting for them.
- If a parent is busy and cannot pick up the child, they must contact a trusted adult and ask them to take their place.
Instruct the Child Beforehand About the Following Situations;
- If a child gets on the wrong bus, they must immediately speak to the driver, as the driver will figure out a plan to get them home safely.
- Make sure that the child knows the parent’s correct phone number and address.
- The child must also carry this vital information with them in their bag or uniform pockets.
- Make sure that the child knows the correct route numbers.
- Ask your child about any bullying incidents. Tell them to report it to you as soon as they find themselves in a difficult situation on the school bus.
Crossing the Road Safely;
- Teach the kids about the stop, look, listen, and think rule;
- Stop and take a step back from the curb
- Look around and continuously on both ways
- Listen for any sounds of approaching traffic
- Think before crossing the road whether it is safe to do so.
- Parents and students must choose the safest place to cross the road and keep checking both ways as they do so.
What Are the Most Common Causes of School Bus Accidents?
School bus accidents can result from errors made by parents, students, and even bus drivers. Here are the most common causes of school bus accidents;
- The drivers engage in unsafe driving practices, such as tailgating, speeding, distracted driving, or unsafe lane changes.
- The drivers are talking on the phone or to the passengers or taking other negligent actions.
- Accidents also occur when the mirrors of the bus are improperly adjusted. Blind spots can be the reason the driver fails to detect cars, or even people, to the side or behind their bus.
- Drivers who fail to check their blind spots before changing lanes, braking, or reversing can cause dangerous accidents.
- Challenging weather, such as snow, fog, rain, or sleet, can also result in hazardous accidents.
- Other motorists can cause school bus accidents if they engage in negligent driving actions.
- Students must get on and off the school bus responsibly. Failure to do so can result in extremely dangerous and even fatal accidents.
- Students who extend their hands or head outside the bus can also get involved in accidents.
- Students must never distract the driver or cause trouble that can interfere with their driving patterns.
What to Do if Your Child Is Involved in a School Bus Accident?
There are few things in the world more frightening for a parent than seeing their child being involved in an accident. This is why we instruct the children to be extra cautious on the bus and keep a keen eye on the driver’s behavior and driving abilities.
However, if, unfortunately, your child is involved in a school bus accident, you can take the following crucial steps;
- Call the police; As soon as an accident occurs, the driver or parents must immediately call the police to report the incident. Carefully describe the situation so that the police can call a medical emergency response.
- Seek emergency medical help; if the child is suffering from any suffering or discomfort, immediately get medical attention. It could be possible that the child is suffering from an internal injury such as damaged organs, bulging discs, broken bones, or internal bleeding.
- Take the child for a medical checkup; Even if the child is not showing any visible signs of discomfort, take them to a doctor for a complete medical checkup.
- Contact the best bus accident lawyer; Bus accident lawyers like Rob Levine & Associates can help you determine who was at fault in causing the accident and get the right help. Rob Levine & Associates lawyers are familiar will all the applicable laws and can present a valid claim for due payments and damages.
Rob Levine & Associates have skilled attorneys that can provide professional help for parents and students who are involved in a bus collision or other accidents. Feel free to contact us at (844) 334-8837 for further information.