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September 8, 2015

School is back and so are the buses!

Whether you have kids, plan to have kids, or were once a kid, you've most likely taken a trip on a school bus. When I was a kid, my biggest concern involved keeping tabs on where the cute boys sat on the bus, but I'm sure my parents had a lot more on their minds than cute boys. I never had any issues on the bus, thanks to my parents constantly reminding me to pay attention to my surroundings. My brother, on the other hand, was a different story. While he never encountered safety issues, he did fall asleep on the bus and missed his stop, along with all the remaining stops. To this day, he never falls asleep in the car—now I understand why.

Approximately 25 million children a day are transported by those big yellow buses and according to Safe Kids Worldwide.

With all the kids going back to school and an increase of school buses on the road, it's a good idea to brush up on bus safety. Approximately 25 million children a day are transported by those big yellow buses and according to Safe Kids Worldwide, school buses are the safest mode of motorized transportation. However, injuries can always occur if kids are not careful and aware when getting on and off the bus.

Safe Kids Worldwide has a great list of tips for parents and drivers:

Parents:

  • Tip 1: Walk with your kids to the bus stop and wait with them until it arrives. Tell kids to stand at least three giant steps back from the curb as the bus approaches and board the bus one at a time. Teach kids to wait for the bus to come to a complete stop before getting off and to never walk behind the bus.
  • Tip 2: If your child needs to cross the street after exiting the bus, he or she should take five giant steps in front of the bus, make eye contact with the bus driver and cross when the driver indicates it's safe. Teach kids to look left, right and left again before crossing the street.
  • Tip 3: Instruct younger kids to use handrails when boarding or exiting the bus. Be careful of straps or drawstrings that could get caught in the door. If your children drop something, they should tell the bus driver and make sure the bus driver is able to see them before they pick it up.

Drivers:

  • Tip 1: Always follow the speed limit and slowdown in school zones and near bus stops. Remember to stay alert and look for kids who may be trying to get to or from the school bus.
  • Tip 2: Slow down and stop if you're driving near a school bus that's flashing yellow or red lights. This means the bus is either preparing to stop (yellow) or already stopped (red), and children are getting on or off.

For additional resources, check out this National School Bus Safety Week Resource Guide.

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