The most important fact that parents must be aware of is the Danger Zone around the outside of a school bus. Despite all of the special mirrors on a bus, drivers may not always be able to see young children who are close to the bus. Everyone near the bus,including students, siblings and pets should stay away from these "danger zones".
Parents can assist by:
- Encouraging students to stay out of the danger zone and do so themselves.
- If a child needs to cross the road to get on or off the bus and you meet the bus, please cross with him or her, following the driver's hand signal.
- Avoid purchasing traditional yellow raincoats, which blend in with the color of the bus.
- Remove all jacket and coat drawstrings.
- Students should keep all belongings in a book bag. Loose items dropped by children can cause them to reach into the Danger Zone.
Ways to Aid Children to Be Safe Riders
Parents can assist their child(ren) in being safe riders by:
- Please have your child waiting at their designated bus stops at least ten (10) minutes prior to the scheduled pick-up time.
- Children are most vulnerable when they are outside the bus; it is important that children wait for the driver to give them the universal crossing signal and that they check for oncoming traffic once they are no longer protected by the bus and before completely crossing. We must remind children to check right and left before stepping out of the stairwell of the bus for motorists who may pass on the right hand side of a stopped school bus.
- All items should fit securely in the child's book bag.
- Musical instruments too large to fit on a child's lap are not permitted (they could block an emergency evacuation). This is also true of over sized book bags with airport-style wheels.
- If your son or daughter needs to go to an alternative site (i.e.: a babysitter) please notify the school and Transportation Department in writing in a timely way. Special forms are available in the schools, and in the Transportation Department
- Bus stop changes will be considered if the current stop presents a safety hazard.