Safe Zones Buses
The Safe Zones School Bus Program is designed to help bus companies train and inform their drivers and employees on identifying and reporting acts of bullying and violence. The presence of the Safe Zones Bus decal assures parents, students and school systems, that zero acts of bulling or aggression will be tolerated while riding on the bus.
Bus companies participating in the Safe Zones School Bus Program are also trained on how to approach discipline of individuals who have been found to have committed acts of agression or bullying. Discipline may take the form of being referred to an anti-bullying education program, suspension
from riding on the school bus, being fined, and/or arrested.
The Safe Zones School Bus Program is just one more way that Safe Zones is helping address the issue of bullying and agression beyond the classroom walls.
“Under the new Massachusetts Anti-bullying Laws, school bus drivers are mandated reporters of incidents of bullying and violence on their bus.
Safe Zones’ School Bus Program assists the bus company and its drivers in identifying and reporting these incidents to comply with the new regulations.
The Safe Zones School Bus Program allows the bus company to demonstrate to the school systems they serve that company’s drivers and employees have been adequately trained in accordance with the law.”
“There is no other such program in the Commonwealth that assists school bus companies in this manner.”
– Jerry Pinto, Founder of SafeZones
School Bus Safety
Kids – staying safe on and around the bus
School bus travel is extremely safe. In Massachusetts our students are transported daily in school buses to and from their homes with very little accidents. Although injuries to school bus passengers are rare they most often happen outside the bus as students are boarding and leaving the bus or crossing the street.
Remember these tips:
- Be at the school bus stop on time.
- Wait in a safe place well back from the edge of the road (4 feet or more).
- Do not play in ditches or on snowbanks.
- Enter the bus in single file holding the hand rail.
- Find a seat right away and stay seated facing forward at all times.
- Do not place things in the aisle.
- Avoid rowdy behaviour. Do not throw things or eat or drink.
- Keep your arms and head inside the bus.
- Never distract the bus driver. Always follow his or her instructions. When you leave the bus, move away from the side. If you can touch the bus, you are too close.
- If you drop something near the bus, never try to pick it up because its quite likely the bus driver can’t see you. Ask an adult or the driver to help.
- Don’t bully (this means all types).
- Remember just because your on the school bus and not in school you’re are still expected to follow the rules as if you were in school.
Why No Seatbelts?
Information from all types of school bus collisions demonstrates that the current school bus design provides a high level of protection to occupants and that seat belts may actually adversely affect the safety of children on school buses (Transport Massachusettes).
Instead of requiring seat belts, school buses are designed and constructed differently from passenger cars. School buses protect passengers through “compartmentalization”, a design that includes:
- Seats with high backs;
- Seats filled with energy-absorbing material;
- Seats placed close together to form compartments;
- Strong seat anchorages.
Studies have shown that adding seat belts to the current seating configuration of a school bus can increase the chance of head and neck injuries. For a seat belt to be effective, it must be worn correctly, snug and on the upper thighs. Because school vehicles carry passengers from the very young to high school students, if seat belts were used, they would need to be readjusted and their use monitored. A seat belt not worn correctly may cause serious injuries.