Are you sure your school buses will be safe for children to travel when the schools reopen again?
The Coronavirus that has brought the world to a standstill is spread through air and contact.
One of the worst facts about the COVID-19 virus is its ability to spread at such a fast rate. Second, children are even more susceptible to this deadly virus. Both these facts make it very important to ensure that you don’t just “clean” the school buses, but completely “sanitize” them.
Before we look into ways to sanitize the bus, let’s first identify the high contamination areas.
They are places on the buses where children are most likely to be holding on to. The stability bars that run through the middle of the bus, the handlebars on the back of the seat, windows, window ledges, and the seats.
The other areas are headrests, seatbelts, luggage racks, door handles, and armrests.
Each surface is made of different materials and may have the virus for different stretches of time. So, it is important to do a deep sanitization of these high contamination areas.
Clean the Bus
Before you sanitize the bus, you need to first clean the floor and the windows.
While cleaning the floor, preferably use a handheld vacuum cleaner that sucks in the dust rather than a broom that could spread the dust in the air.
If you have a cleaner that works on different surfaces, then you can use it to clean the vinyl seats and window ledges as well.
It would be even better if you install a HEPA filter in the vacuum cleaner to remove microbes and allergens from the surfaces.
You can also use soap and water to wash the floor. But then make sure that there is no waterlogged in the grooves and corners of the floor.
If you’re in a location where the water may not dry out soon, preferably use only the vacuum cleaner.
The bus may have a carpet or a rug on the floor, drapes on the windows, and covers on the seats. Remove all these fabrics and wash them separately in detergent and hot water. You can also add disinfectant during the final rinse. Make sure the fabrics are completely dry before you put them in the bus again.
Clean Air conditioners or Heater vents
If you have installed an air conditioner or heater on the school bus, then carefully clean the vents. First, wipe the vents with a damp cloth to remove the dust and then spray the disinfectant.
Disinfect the surfaces
Now that the basic cleaning is done, the final step is to do a complete sanitization of all the surfaces. While doing this, you need to pay more attention to the high contamination areas.
Use an alcohol-based sanitizer to disinfect all the surfaces. You need to first wipe all the surfaces with a clean cloth dipped in the sanitizer. After that, you can also spray the disinfectant inside the bus.
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Tips to Sanitize the School Bus
- It is best to sanitize the school bus before and after every trip
- You can use 0.1% sodium hypochlorite (bleach) solution for disinfection
- While cleaning, always go from the least soiled to the most soiled surface
- Wear gloves while sanitizing the bus and discard or wash thoroughly after use
- Encourage students to wash their hands with soap/use sanitizer before they climb on the bus
- Make sure the students maintain the “social distance” when they’re seated in the bus
- Ensure children wear face masks when they get on the bus and keep it on even while they’re traveling
- Add the bus sanitization checking option to your school bus tracking software to ensure that this process is not missed
Cleanliness and safety are two important parameters of student transport. Make it mandatory to do a deep sanitization of all your school buses to ensure safe and hygienic transport for your school students.