Gray Line Adding Seat Belts to Charter School Buses in Davidson County
Bus manufacturer and supplier Gray Line announced this week that it will begin installing seat belts on school buses that serve public charter schools in Davidson County.
Per a report by WKRN.com, Gray Line aims to have lap and shoulder seat belts installed on more than half of its buses by the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year and its entire fleet outfitted by the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year.
The president and CEO of Gray Line Tennessee said that safety is the company’s top priority and that three things stand out in school bus safety: driver performance, student behavior, and safety equipment.
A statement released by the company indicated that its buses are already equipped with two camera systems that monitor drivers and students. The footage can then be used to identify potential driver performance issues and student behavior problems, which the bus company works with the school administrators to correct.
The federal government requires that school buses meet at least 35 mandated safety standards, but only six states require buses to be equipped with seat belts.
It was nearly one month ago when six children were killed in a school bus accident in Chattanooga.
3 Important Factors in School Bus Safety
School buses remain one of the safest ways for children to get to and from school in Middle Tennessee, but like all vehicles, they’re susceptible to being involved in accidents that can result in serious injuries. Some of the most important factors in school bus safety include the following:
- Driver training and competence
A school bus is only as safe as the level of experience, caution, and training of the person behind the wheel. School districts in Middle Tennessee have varying levels of requirements for people to become bus drivers and maintain their employment, but all require that drivers hold CDLs and pass both written exams and skills tests before they’re allowed to drive school buses. Some districts have additional requirements, including mandatory ride-alongs and frequent performance evaluations.
- Student behavior and compliance
The safest bus is one where the driver is highly competent and students are quiet and stay in their seats. However, student behavior can be unpredictable, and all it takes is one student causing a disruption or interfering with the bus driver’s concentration and focus on the roadway to put others at risk. It’s important for parents, teachers, and school administrators to teach children bus safety rules and take immediate steps to correct behavioral issues.
- Bus maintenance and repairs
Buses should receive frequent maintenance and repairs to remain in safe driving condition. Tires should be frequently replaced, especially when tread begins to wear down, and brakes should be frequently inspected and replaced. In addition, drivers should always have access to properly adjusted mirrors and safety features like flashing lights and extended stop signs to safely pick up and drop off students at bus stops and at school. Finally, buses that have faded should be repainted or replaced, as the bright yellow color of school buses makes them easier for drivers to spot, even in limited visibility.
At Matt Hardin Law, our Nashville bus accident attorneys know how important your child’s safety is. Whether he or she is walking to the bus stop, riding the bus, or exiting the bus, your top priority is making sure he or she stays safe and avoids accidents and injuries. Statistics show that school buses are one of the safest ways for children to get to and from school, and they become even safer when drivers are properly trained, all safety features are present, and students are disciplined and behaved.
If your child was recently injured in a bus accident, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation. Bus drivers and school districts are responsible for making sure daily routes are as safe as possible, and when they fail to do so, they can be considered negligent. To find out how our legal team can assist you, dial (615) 200-1111 or complete a free online consultation form.