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National School Bus Safety Week Oct. 20-24

Oct. 22 Bus Driver Appreciation Day

October 20, 2014

At my Stop, you Stop!"

October 20 – 24 is National School Bus Safety Week

 

Topeka —October 20 to 24 is National School Bus Safety Week, and this year’s theme, “At my Stop, you Stop!” is a reminder to motorists and children about the dangers that exist outside the school bus.

 

School buses are, by far, the safest way for kids of all ages to get to and from school. Students are about 50 times more likely to arrive at school alive if they take the bus than if they drive themselves or ride with friends—more than 20 times safer than if they ride with a parent or other adult. “School buses keep an annual estimated 17.3 million cars off roads surrounding schools each morning,” said Cherie Sage, Safe Kids Kansas.  “This can drastically improve safety for all children, reducing traffic congestion on the roads for car-riders and children who bike and walk to school, and minimizing traffic dangers immediately around schools where children enter and exit.”

 

While school buses are the safest mode of motorized transportation for getting children to and from school, injuries can occur if kids are not careful and alert when getting on and off the bus. The greatest risk involved is not riding the school bus, but getting on and off the bus. It is illegal for vehicles in Kansas to pass a school bus when its red signal lights are flashing, however; it is important to teach kids to pay attention to traffic at their bus stop and never assume that every vehicle will stop as expected. Kids need to put away their own distractions, such as texting, talking on the phone, or listening to music, when crossing the street. Check out these videos about the importance of drivers and pedestrians paying attention around school buses and crosswalks.

Bus Stop Safety: http://youtu.be/5V-pQVymOH8

Moment of Silence: http://www.safekids.org/video/video-moment-silence

 

Here are some school bus safety tips that all children should know:

 

  • Walk with your kids to the bus stop and wait with them until it arrives. Tell kids to stand at least three giant steps back from the curb as the bus approaches and board the bus one at a time.
  • Teach kids to wait for the bus to come to a complete stop before getting off and never to walk behind the bus.
  • If your child needs to cross the street after exiting the bus, he or she should take five giant steps in front of the bus, make eye contact with the bus driver and cross when the driver indicates it’s safe. Teach kids to look left, right and left again before crossing the street.
  • Instruct younger kids to use handrails when boarding or exiting the bus. Be careful of straps or drawstrings that could get caught in the door. If your children drop something under the bus, they should tell the bus driver and make sure the bus driver is able to see them before they pick it up.
  • Drivers should always follow the speed limit and slow down in school zones and near bus stops. Remember to stay alert and look for kids who may be trying to get to or from the school bus.
  • Slow down and stop if you’re driving near a school bus that is flashing yellow or red lights. This means the bus is either preparing to stop (yellow) or already stopped (red), and children are getting on or off.

 

National School Bus Safety Week is held every year in the third week of October and led by the National Association for Pupil Transportation. Visit www.napt.org for more details. To learn more about pedestrian safety and child passenger safety, visit www.safekids.org.

 

About Safe Kids Kansas 
Safe Kids Kansas works to prevent childhood injury, the leading cause of death and disability to children. Safe Kids Kansas is a member of Safe Kids Worldwide, a global network of organizations dedicated to preventing injuries in children. Coalition members include over 70 statewide organizations, agencies and businesses and a network of local coalitions across the state. 

Visit us at www.safekidskansas.org and on Facebook.

Cherie Sage

Safe Kids Kansas

1000 SW Jackson, Suite 230

Topeka, KS  66612

785-296-1223

Fax: 785-296-8645

www.safekidskansas.org

 

 

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