Setting Safety Standards: How Safe Is a School Bus?
Being a parent of a school-going kid, the safety and overall wellness of your child is of paramount importance. And this particular wellness doesn’t start and end within the classroom walls. It, instead, starts when the child boards the school bus, headed for another day in school and ends when he/she is back home in the evening.
A school bus is often regarded as the safest vehicle on the road, at least in developed countries. In the US, everything about the vehicle, from its size, structure, and design, to the way it is driven, makes it fairly safe, according to the National Highway Safety Traffic Administration (NHTSA). The law also protects them by designating that when they are boarding and alighting, no car should pass by regardless of the direction of approach.
But, despite the bus being perhaps the safest on the road accidents, somehow still happen. Innocent school-going kids get injured and some even die. Statistically, 4-6 students aged between 5 and 18 years die each year while aboard a school bus, not to mention the hundreds of thousands who get injured.
While some of these accidents are unavoidable, parents, independent organizations and the government still have a right to ask the hard questions. They ought to, especially because the NHTSA and every parent believe school buses ought to be the safest and that no fatalities should occur.
A school bus can’t be 100% safe
However, if the school upholds all the basic safety norms and the children are taught the importance of staying safe, no accident will happen. These safety tips can be:
1. Walking the child to and from the school bus stop and ensuring he/she is a safety at the hands of the parent or guardian.
2. Ensuring that while waiting for the bus, the child is at a safe distance from the curb.
3. Reminding them to never peep out of the window when the bus is moving.
4. A guardian or the driver holding the children’s hands as they cross the road.
5. Teaching the kid to always ask for help when retrieving anything that’s fallen under the bus.
What if an accident happened due to a slipshod driver or negligence of the school?
Maybe the school doesn’t enforce the major tips required to keep school buses secure, like driving without checking whether the kids are properly restrained and the seats are firmly in place. Or, the driver of the school bus is a rookie who probably doesn’t ensure kids stay in their seats, belted up and facing the front as the bus is moving.
See, your school-going kid getting injured in the hands of the school isn’t something to joke about. It is a legal matter, decided in a court of law, especially if it’s found to be a personal injury. You may recover benefits for your claim with Coye Law Firm or any other personal injury law firm.
In some instances, the accident could be lying squarely on the school and the bus driver. And in such a scenario, the best thing to do is to sue the school and whoever was responsible. Investigations will be done and whoever declared responsible will be judged in the court. Meanwhile, teach your little one the essence of safety on the bus and in school!