School bus transportation still remains the safest means of transportation for school children. It is designed and manufactured to ensure safety and protection of students. At the time of manufacturing a school bus, it should conform to a set of federal and state standards. There are certain characteristics often associated with the school bus.
Some of the essential qualities of great school bus transportation are as follows:
School buses are constructed on the basis of the compartmentalization concept, which indeed provides a passive restraint system instead of seat belt usage. Seats are arranged higher off the ground so that the average sized opposing vehicles on the road are beneath the feet of students.
Apart from this, compartmentalization also makes use of seats padded with energy absorbing construction covering all metal parts. Spacing is also closer when we compare it to the passenger vehicles.
There are so many escape routes in a school bus like a rear emergency door, side emergency operation windows, front service door and roof hatches designed to offer ventilation or fully open ones. Apart from that, escape should be possible through every side window. Students should be given training to use those evacuation drills in the case of emergency.
Maintenance of Discipline
Discipline is a serious issue with regard to school transportation. Without proper discipline, drivers will not be able to give proper attention to the roads. There should be a proper set of rules and regulations for the school bus students. Installation of video cameras and regular monitoring of students can reduce issues related to their misbehavior. Drivers have a huge role to play, when it comes to maintaining discipline inside the school bus.
Installing GPS Tracker Software
Integration of GPS school bus tracking system can help the school authorities as well as parents to know the real time location of the school bus. With the help of the GPS software, the parents or school authorities are notified whenever the child boards or gets off the school bus.
Use of stop arms
Adding stop arms to the school bus transportation has always been a great idea for ensuring better safety. Whenever a school bus stops to load or unload children, stop arms will be extended from the side of the bus, giving a proper warning to the other vehicles. Use of stop arms has now become a common safety standard in most of the school transportation vehicles.
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Introducing RFID tags
RFID tags can be introduced for improving the efficiency and safety of the school bus. The RFID School Bus Tracking System automatically sends an instant notification to parents if their child's school bus is approaching.
Proper Planning of Navigation
Proper navigation or trip planning adds to the efficiency of the school bus transportation. It helps the driver to schedule the trip in advance and thus know the whereabouts of each student at each pick up points. In case of any issues such as traffic jam, unfavorable climatic conditions etc., the drivers should have an idea about alternative routes. This will help to save time as well as to augment school bus safety.
Providing Appropriate Training to Drivers
School bus driving is indeed a risky business to handle. Minimum age for school bus drivers should be above 25 years. Usually, people aged less than 25 years are more prone to rash or careless driving. This becomes a huge threat to the safety of school children. The school bus drivers should be given training regarding rules to be followed on road and efficient management of students in the school bus. Such training should be made mandatory for every school bus driver, which would indeed give them a rough idea regarding school bus driving.
Planning Good Design for School Transportation
Extra care should be taken while designing school buses, especially in the loading and unloading areas which enable the students to safely board and exit the school bus. Non bus riders and other vehicles should not be allowed to trespass in the areas where students board or get off the school bus. The school management should provide appropriate space for drivers to safely enter and exit the school bus.
All the above qualities can make school bus transportation safe and successful. Safety is the prime criteria to be looked upon, while considering school bus transportation. If proper arrangements are made to ensure safety in a school bus, the parents will feel more confident to depend on school transportation.