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Bus Safety

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, buses are the safest form of highway transportation. However, there are important safety precautions to take when boarding, departing and nearby a bus. Please refer to this guide to ensure you and your student are safe when using the school bus.

When going to the bus stop, students are expected to:

  • Use the sidewalk where one is provided, or
  • Walk on the left shoulder of the street or roadway facing traffic, single file or no more than two abreast when there are no sidewalks.

At the bus stop, students are expected to:

  • Arrive five minutes before their scheduled pick-up time; 
  • Be cooperative and respectful of property (parents are responsible for their child’s behavior at the bus stop);
  • Stay a safe distance back from the curb and wait for the bus to come to a complete stop, and
  • Never accept rides from strangers, even though the student may have missed the bus.

If meeting your child(ren) at the bus stop on the take home route, you must arrive five minutes before their scheduled drop off time.

When boarding the bus, students are expected to:

  • Remain on the side of the street they reside on (if students must cross the street, they should walk 10 steps in front of the bus before crossing);
  • Stop, look at the bus driver and wait until the driver gives a hand signal to cross, then look left, right and left again before crossing the street;
  • Walk quickly across the street, without stopping, turning back or running, and
  • Enter in an orderly manner using the handrails, no pushing, shoving or crowding.

While on the bus, students are expected to:

  • Take a seat promptly, remain seated and avoid moving around while the bus is in motion;
  • Remain on the bus until they have reached their school or designated stop;
  • Follow the instructions of the driver and/or chaperone promptly and respectfully;
  • Keep hands, feet and objects to yourself (no pushing, shoving or horseplay, do not put head, arms, feet or any object out of the window);
  • Observe the rule of not having windows open more than 6” (only open the window to the indicator line painted on the inside pillars between each window);
  • Respect the vehicle (students will be charged for damage/vandalism to the bus);
  • Hold large items or musical instruments (up to 39”) on their laps or in seat area, but not in the aisle;
  • Not handle any of the bus safety equipment, unless directed by driver (first aid kit, reflectorized triangles and the emergency door are for emergency use only);
  • Not bring weapons, flammable materials or any other dangerous or objectionable items on the bus;
  • Not fight, use abusive language/gestures, light incendiary devices or use tobacco products;
  • Not throw, flip or propel objects on the bus, and
  • Not eat, drink or bring animals on the bus.

When leaving the bus, students are expected to:

  • Remain seated until the bus has completely stopped and then exit without pushing or crowding;
  • Use the handrail when leaving the bus, and
  • Move away from the bus after stepping onto the curb.

If students must cross the street, they should walk 10 steps ahead of the bus before crossing. Stop, look at the bus driver and wait until the driver gives a hand signal to cross. Then look left, right and left again before proceeding. Walk quickly across the street, without stopping, turning back or running.

Know the danger zones

The danger zones are the areas on all sides of the bus where children are in the most danger of not being seen by the driver (10 feet in front of the bus where the driver may be too high to see a child, 10 feet on either side of the bus where a child may be in the driver’s blind spot, and the area behind the school bus).

A chart depicting school bus danger zones.