The kids are back in school, therefore, now is better than ever for a refresher in bus stop and bus riding safety. Every year an abundance of children suffer injuries, sometimes severe or even fatal, at bus stops or from getting on and off of the school bus, all of which could be prevented. A common bus stop related accident includes children being struck by a vehicle while waiting for the school bus or while entering or departing the school bus.
Parents are reminded to have their children wait for the bus on sidewalks and stay away from the streets at all time. Children should stay alert and should avoid talking on the cellphone, texting or listening to music while at the bus stop or entering or exiting the bus. Having your child stay alert is especially important if they have to cross the street after exiting the school bus to get to their destination. Unfortunately, we can not depend upon other drivers to abide by the law requiring them to stop for a school bus, even if the school bus is on the opposite side of the street.
It is also common for a child to suffer injuries as a result of being stricken by the school bus they are entering or departing. Therefore, it is important to remind children to wait for the bus to come to a complete stop before they get on or off of the bus. Also, a child should make sure the bus driver can see them at all times by avoiding standing near the back of the bus or around the wheels of the bus.
The National Safety Council (NCS) provides several safety tips to go over with your child to ensure a safe bus ride:
- Be aware of moving traffic.
- Leave plenty of time to get to the bus stop. Don’t rush.
- Pay attention to your surroundings; listening to your music player or playing handheld video games may lead to distractions and potential injury.
- Don’t wear a hood as it makes it more difficult to hear and see traffic.
- Stay at a safe distance from the street and don’t play around while waiting for the bus.
- Stay 10 giant steps away from the outside of the bus while the bus is pulling up so the driver can see you.
- Wait for the bus to stop completely before you move towards it to get on, or before you stand up to get off.
- Be cautious of clothing or backpacks with drawstrings, toggles, or key chains that can get caught on the bus handrails and doors.
- Hold the handrail going up and down the stairwell so you don’t trip.
- Find a seat and sit down as soon as you’re on the bus.
- Be courteous and respectful to your driver. Listen to directions.
- Don’t put your head, arms, papers or anything out the window.
- Don’t pick up anything you drop near the bus. The driver may not see you. Instead, ask the driver for help.
- Wait to cross the street until the driver lets you know it’s OK.
- Stay away from the bus wheels at all times – the driver cannot see you.
- If your parent meets you at the bus stop, make sure he or she waits on the same side of the street where you will be dropped off so you won’t have to cross the street.
If your child or a loved one has suffered a personal injury while at a bus stop or while riding a school bus, you can learn about your legal rights from an experienced New Orleans personal injury attorney by filling out our free, no obligation case review form located on this website.