The Free Press, Mankato, MN


September 27, 2011

Ask a trooper: Why not seatbelts in school buses?


Safety is always more important than keeping a schedule.   Children should forgo loose accessories and clothing that can get caught in the door of the bus.  Finally, insist your child uses the hand rails in and out of the bus, the steps are steep and irregular; tripping and falling onto concrete can cause injury or death. 


Parents - Children need to be respectful, quiet and always remain seated on the bus.  A bus driver’s job is to DRIVE; they should not be maintaining order or discipline and should have minimal distractions.  

Parents need to be clear that their student’s behavior is their responsibility.  They need to react appropriately and promptly to notice about their child’s behavior while on the bus.      

Tragedy more often occurs outside the school bus.  

A bus is high and can block the view of the driver and the drivers of other vehicles.  Children need to give the bus a wide berth, moving outside of the driver’s blind spots. When crossing or moving in front of the school bus a child should be far enough ahead to see the driver’s face, thus the driver can see them.

Have your child stop at the edge of the bus and look for traffic, as well as pausing at each lane of traffic.  

A driver cannot see them if they cannot see the driver.  Do not allow them to solely rely on other’s direction to cross; they need to be sure themselves and never assume a driver will stop just because they are approaching the crosswalk or an extended stop arm.

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