Keeping Tallahassee Kids Safe on and Around School Buses

Jimmy photo

Tallahassee School Bus Service

While Tallahassee parents may be somewhat happy to see the school year start and have household routines resume a more normal schedule, these parents often cannot help but worry about their child’s safety as they travel to and from school.

Often school kids take a big yellow school bus to reach school. In Leon County, over 12,000 students ride the bus to school each day. The Leon County Schools Transportation Department buses travel approximately 5,500,000 miles per year picking up and dropping off students at over 6,500 bus stops daily.

Children Injured In Bus Crashes

School buses are considered to be the safest mode of transportation for getting kids back and forth to school, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Students who ride school buses are over 50 times more likely to arrive at school safely than if they drive themselves or ride with friends. Government data also indicates that they also are over 20 percent more likely to arrive safely by bus than if their parents drive them.

While school buses may not result in as many crashes as other types of vehicles, when accidents do occur, they can cause serious injuries or death to some of the youngest members of our community. Since 2003, there have been 1,353 people killed in school-transportation related crashes, which is an average of 135 fatalities per year.

For those injured in school bus-related accidents, 8 percent of fatalities occurred to school bus occupants (either drivers or passengers). Another 21 percent of fatalities occurred to non-occupants (such as pedestrians and bicyclists). However, most of the people who lost their lives in a bus crash accident (71 percent) were occupants of other vehicles.

Accidents can also happen when children are boarding or getting off of school buses. Each year, about 8 school-age pedestrians are killed by buses and another 4 children are killed by other vehicles that are involved in school bus-related crashes. Most of these children were injured in front-end collisions where the bus was traveling straight on the roadway, although some were injured when the bus made a left- or right-hand turn into the child.

Safety Tips

To keep kids safe in and around school buses, it is important to practice the following safety tips:

  • Arrive early at the bus stop to prevent running at or near the bus. As the bus approaches, stand 3 giant steps back from the curb or roadway.
  • When the bus stops, listen for the air brake and wait for the bus door to open before stepping toward the bus. Use the handrail to avoid slips or falls when entering the bus.
  • Stay seated in the bus seat until the bus arrives at the destination.
  • When walking away from the bus, stay at least 10 giant steps away from the bus. (Closer than 10 feet is considered the “danger zone” where the driver cannot see students.)
  • Never try to pick up anything that falls close to the bus without first telling the bus driver.
  • Never walk behind a bus or in between parked buses.

Tallahassee Bus Accident Lawyer

Unfortunately, school bus accidents can occur in a number of ways—from distracted or impaired drivers, speeding or aggressive driving, faulty equipment, improper maintenance, unruly passengers, or even drivers of other vehicles. An experienced school bus accident lawyer knows how to arrange for a thorough crash investigation in order to preserve evidence and make sure that you are able to help your child receive the best medical care available.

If you have questions about a bus accident injury claim in the Tallahassee or Southern Georgia area, the personal injury attorneys at Fasig & Brooks are available for a free consultation. Contact us today, as there is a very limited time to pursue your rights if the school bus was owned or operated by any type of governmental entity (such as a school district). Call us anytime at (850) 222-3232 or by completing our online contact form.