School Bus Safety by PartsGeek

Millions of students of all ages, from preschool all the way to high school, use a bus to get to school daily. School buses are much safer than they might look: In addition to being made from the sturdiest auto parts, they are designed to protect riders better than ordinary passenger vehicles in the event of an accident. Still, there are many other parts when it comes to school bus safety. Parents, teachers, and kids should all brush up on the most important safety tips.

Safety for Teachers and Parents

Buses aren't like other autos/vehicles: They are especially designed for pupil safety; however, safety includes getting to the bus and unloading from it after the trip, too! If students must walk to the bus, parents should make sure they wear bright, contrasting clothing so they can be easily seen. All items should be securely packed in a backpack so nothing can get dropped. If possible, students should walk in groups of three or more.

When it's time to go, kids should leave for the bus stop in plenty of time, so they will be more likely to walk at a safer, slower pace and to use sidewalks the way they should. Even if kids go to the bus stop on their own, observe them now and then to make sure they are standing three "big steps" - six feet - from the roadside while they wait. It's also very important to avoid running, rough-housing, and playing with balls near the bus stop!

Parents and teachers won't usually get to ride the bus, and are often prohibited from doing so by school district rules. Still, they should maintain contact with the bus driver, so they can take action if kids exhibit problem behaviors. Children should be instructed to speak quietly on the bus, avoid getting up while it is in motion, and make sure they don't do anything to distract the driver. This is especially true in rain or fog, when driving is harder!

Be sure to coach kids in the safest way to get onto and off of the bus. They should wait until the bus comes to a complete stop before approaching it. When walking near a school bus for any reason, kids should always remain in sight of the driver. If a child has to walk past a school bus, he or she should walk in front of the bus rather than behind it. Kids also need to remember to be careful going up and down school bus stairs: Don't run, jump, or push!

Safety for Children

Kids are important when it comes to school bus safety, too! When walking to the school bus, kids should never take shortcuts, but stick to the sidewalk on routes where crossing guards can be seen. It's possible to get hurt or get into an accident on the way to the bus, so it's important to always look both ways before crossing streets and be alert to any unusual sights or sounds. When waiting for the bus, stay six feet from the roadside. If there is a covered bus stop shelter or bench, it's a good idea to stay seated. As the bus approaches, don't run and don't dart into the road!

Once a kid is seated on the bus, things are a lot safer! That's still not the end of the story, though: The most important thing any kid can do on the bus is avoid making lots of noise. Talking quietly is okay. Kids shouldn't shout, throw anything, or distract the bus driver. They should also avoid getting up to switch seats or walk around the bus, especially while it's in motion. It's easy to slip and fall if the bus stops suddenly. During the trip, pupils should be careful to be extra quiet at railroad crossings, since bus drivers in many states have to stop and listen for trains.

What about getting on and off the bus? It's vital to never run near a school bus, whether coming or going. Before getting onto or off of a bus, it's a good idea to look around and listen carefully for anything that might cause an accident. If something gets dropped near a bus, kids should never try to get it back, but let an adult know instead. Finally, kids should always approach a school bus from the front, never behind, and wait for the driver to signal before crossing past it!

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