Another school year will start soon for many Texas children, and we’ll once again see those big yellow school buses on the road.
Riding a school bus is among the safest possible transportation modes for your kids. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Administration shows that taking the bus is 13 times safer than riding in a car and 10 times safer than walking to school.
In fact, most of the children hurt in school bus-related accidents are injured as pedestrians, either being hit by the bus while walking or by other drivers attempting to illegally pass a stopped bus.
Texas bus accident lawyers understand how catastrophic accidents of this nature can be. These school bus safety tips can help child pedestrians and motorists avoid such a tragic and unnecessary situation.
School Bus Safety Tips for Motorists
Never pass illegally: It is illegal in ALL states to pass a school bus that is stopped to let children on or off.
Watch the lights: The yellow flashing lights on a school bus alert motorists that the bus is nearing a stop to unload or load children. Red flashing lights, along with an extended STOP sign on the side of the bus, indicates that the bus is stopped to allow children on and off. Traffic going both directions on undivided roadways, and traffic behind the bus on ANY roadway, is required by law to stop when the bus’s red lights and STOP sign are in use.
Keep Your Distance: Stop far enough from the bus to allow children to enter and exit safely. There should be at least 10 feet around the bus in all directions, as inside this area is where children are in the most danger of being struck.
Tips for Parents and Children
Safety in Numbers: Always walk young children to the bus stop, and make sure older children walk in groups.
Look Both Ways: Remind your kids to look left, right, then left again before crossing the street to board a bus. When getting OFF the bus, always look to the right first as impatient drivers may try to pass on the right.
Wait Safely: Children should not play running or pushing games at the bus stop as this can be dangerous near traffic. Texas bus accident lawyers recommend waiting at least 10 feet, or five big steps, away from the road.
Safe Boarding: Your children should know to ALWAYS cross in front of the bus, and never behind it. Maintain a 10-foot distance ahead of bus when crossing in front of it, and maintain eye contact with the driver while doing so if possible. When getting on the bus, DO NOT cross until the bus has completely stopped and its red flashing lights are activated.
The Houston car accident lawyers at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers have helped families that have been affected by these tragic accidents and know the legal complications and emotional toll that it takes. We fully support measures to increase school bus safety and will continue to serve the needs of Texas bus accident victims.
If you or a loved is injured in a school bus accident, contact one of our experienced Texas bus accident lawyers today for a free consultation.