With students heading back to school this fall, children and buses will once again fill the roads. In support of its mission to “save lives, prevent injuries and reduce economic costs due to road traffic crashes,” the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently published back to school safety tips for all drivers, students, and parents ().
A child is not at greatest risk when riding a school bus, but when leaving or approaching one. Between 2008 and 2017, 264 school-age children were killed in school transportation accidents. Nearly 80 percent of those students were either waiting for the bus, walking, biking, or in another vehicle.
Drivers: Stop for School Buses
- Slow down when you see yellow flashing lights because the bus is about to stop. Students will be nearby waiting to board.
- Stop when you see red flashing lights and wait at least 20 feet behind the bus. Students will be getting on and off the bus.
- Exercise caution even when lights are not flashing. Keep an eye out for children when you drive through a neighborhood, school zone, or bus stop.
Parents: Teach Your Children to Play It SAFE
- Stay five steps away from the curb.
- Always wait until the bus comes to a complete stop.
- Face forward when sitting on the bus.
- Exit the bus after it stops and look left-right-left before crossing the street.
Walkers: Watch the Road
- Use sidewalks if available, otherwise walk near the curb facing traffic.
- Cross the street at marked crosswalks and look left-right-left for cars.
- Never push or shove others when you are walking near traffic.
- Look at the road, not your phones.
Bikers: Know the Rules of the Road
- Always wear a helmet with the chin strap fastened.
- Ride in the same direction as the cars and obey all traffic signs and signals.
- Stay in the bike lane when available.
- Never use electronic devices such as your phone when riding.
Do your part to make the upcoming school year a safe one for everyone involved. Whether you’re a driver, parent, walker, or rider, please follow these safety tips to help the NHTSA prevent any more school bus tragedies.
If you or a loved one have been injured in an automobile accident, please contact Shamberg, Johnson & Bergman for a free consultation. We will only receive a fee in the event of a successful resolution of your case.