Nothing is more important than the safety of our children. Janet Greer and Kelly Turner, Safety Specialists of the School Bus Company, offer some important safety tips for passengers and motorists.
For the children riding the bus:
- Never cross close to the front of the bus – make sure the driver can see you.
- Never pick up anything you drop close to or under the bus – ask the driver what to do.
- Never run after a bus or bang on the side.
- If you must cross the street in front of the bus, follow the driver’s directions, and stop and look before you cross.
- Never run across a street, it’s better to miss the bus than rush and risk being hit by a car.
- Stay away from the rear and sides of the bus – always be in a safe place where the driver can see you.
- Never pass a school bus when its stop lights are flashing.
- Be extra vigilant around school hours – assume a child might run out at any moment.
- Be courteous to school buses, give them room and let them change lanes when they need to.
- Be at the bus stop five minutes before your children are scheduled to return from school. If the bus is delayed, get one of the group of parents to call the Township Transportation Department or the Bus Company providing the transportation.
- Always have a Plan B for when you can’t make it to the bus stop on time. If in the morning, know where the other stops are so you can meet the bus at those locations. If in the afternoon, coordinate with one of the other parents who are at the bus stop to pick up your child.
- Notify the authorities if something is suspicious at the bus stop. Get license plate numbers and a description of any persons who are not there to pick up children.
- Lunches should be eaten at lunch time, not on the bus. Avoid packing glass containers using foil packing for both drinks and food. Glass bottles and containers break and could jam the brake pedal of the school vehicle. Children should not be eating on the bus at any time.
Always remember: School bus drivers are not perfect. They are human and do make mistakes. However, School Bus Drivers are drug screened, pass a bi-annual physical, and are fingerprinted with the State of New Jersey and the Bread of the FBI for criminal activities that would prohibit them from operating a school bus. Every school bus driver loves their job. Their jobs are made easier when their passengers are well behaved and when the parents, school, and bus owners support them. Together we make the bus trip safer. Remember, your children are the safest when they are on the bus.