School Bus Accident Prevention Tips
School bus services are huge help to families, allowing parents the freedom from transporting their children back and forth from school.
Considered to be one of the largest types of mass transit in the United States, the convenience school buses offer come along with some dangers: when a school bus crash occurs it is often devastating, causing broken bones, serious lacerations, brain injuries and even death.
It is estimated that that there are hundreds of fatalities and millions of injuries caused annually by school bus collisions, costing more than $20 billion in damages and $10 billion in resources, not to mention the emotional costs of the pain and suffering involved.
Clearly schools, parents and children all must play an important role in preventing school bus accidents to avoid the terrible toll the extract upon families and communities.
Causes of School Bus Accidents
Often considered under pedestrian and personal injury laws, school bus accidents may occur because of road defects, inclement weather conditions or unexpected wildlife on the road but may also be caused by human errors such as improper bus maintenance, driver distraction and speeding, overloaded buses or improperly trained bus operators.
Tips for School Bus Accident Prevention
- Parents and children can do a lot to prevent a school bus accident. The following safety rules are simple to uphold, easy to explain to children and can make all the difference.
- Dress for visibility. Children should be dressed in bright, easy-to-see colors and use jackets and backpacks with reflective strips. This is especially important on foggy, snowy or rainy days.
- Walk upright in traffic. It is hard to see children bent over picking up their belongings, so make sure your child has a backpack they can wear and knows to keep it on and stand upright for extra visibility.
- Obey proper safety techniques when crossing streets. Teach children to look to both sides twice before crossing any street and to walk on sidewalks, not roads. Children should also be aware that designated crosswalks are the only area appropriate for crossing a street.
- Obey proper safety techniques when getting on or off of a bus. Children should likewise look both ways before stepping off of the bus or onto the bus to watch for impatient drivers illegally circumventing around the bus to try to get ahead.
- Do not distract the driver when on the bus. Driver distraction is a leading cause of accidents and if children can remember to stay quiet and avoid roughhousing when on the school bus they can help the driver be more attentive to the road and increase everyone’s safety.
- Always stay seated when on the bus. Unfortunately, school buses are not equipped with seat belts but it is still dangerous to walk around when the bus is in motion. Remaining seated will lessen the danger if a collision does occur.
- Never, ever get under a school bus. Children should understand that even if they drop something the rules under the vehicle they should not under any circumstances try to retrieve objects underneath the bus. It is impossible for drivers to see children under their vehicle and easy to seriously injure or kill a child if they drive directly over them.
- Never cross the road behind a school bus. Only cross in front after the driver indicates that it is safe.
- Never try to stop a bus that is already moving to get something left behind. Let your child know that they should inform you of objects left on the bus so you can call the school or the bus company to retrieve them later on.
- Pick up children on the side of the street where they are let off the bus. An exuberant child, happy to see his or her parent might run out into traffic without thinking, if they are on the opposite side of the street.
School Bus Accident Claims: a Legal Perspective
Any citizen harmed or injured by another individual’s or entity’s negligence, carelessness or malicious actions has the right to file legal actions in order to recover damages from those responsible.
From a legal perspective, filing a claim with the assistance of a school bus accident lawyer is a far more effective way of seeking compensation for losses than attempting to undertake the task on one’s own.
If you have then the victim from school bus accident it is in your best interest to contact school bus accident attorney promptly to help you navigate the complexities of your claim and lead you all the way to a fair settlement.