School Bus Safety Rules

Knowing the rules can keep your children safe on the school bus.
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School Bus Safety Rules

Over 26 million students ride a school bus each day. For these students, the school day begins and ends with a trip on a school bus. Unfortunately, each year many children and others are injured or killed in school bus incidents.

School buses are among the safest forms of transportation. Children are at greatest risk when approaching or leaving a bus than riding in one. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration encourages parents to teach their children these rules for getting on and off the school bus.

Bus Stop Safety

  • Arrive early
    Children should arrive at the bus stop before the bus is scheduled to arrive.
  • Stay away from the road
    Children should be at least three giant steps (six feet) away from the curb.
  • Be cautious
    Remind children that the bus stop is not a place to run or play.

Getting on Safely

  • Be Patient
    Children should wait until the bus comes to a complete stop. Once the door opens, and the driver signals that it is okay to approach they can begin moving toward the bus.
  • Use Handrails
    Children should use the handrails to avoid falling, especially in wet or snowy weather.

Getting off Safely

  • Stay in Front
    Children should avoid walking behind the school bus. If crossing the street in front of the school bus stay 10 feet (five giant steps) in front of the bus.
  • Make Eye Contact
    Children should make eye contact with the bus driver before crossing to make sure the driver can see him/her.
  • Stay Visible
    If the child drops something near the school bus, they should alert the driver rather than try to retrieve it themselves as the driver might lose sight of them.
  • Stay Alert
    All vehicles are required to stop for a school bus when it is stopped to load or unload passengers, but children should not rely on them to do so properly.

Behavior on the Bus

  • Don’t Distract the Driver Once on the bus, children should sit down and avoid loud talking or other distractions for the bus driver.
  • Stay Inside the Bus Children should never put their hands, arms or heads out of the window.
  • Keep Aisles Clear Books or bags are tripping hazards and can block the way in an emergency.
  • Get Ready Before reaching their stop, children should get ready to leave by getting their belongings together.
  • Wait for the Bus to Stop Children should wait for the bus to stop completely at their destination before getting up from their seat, walking carefully to the front door and exit using the handrail.

Following these rules can help children stay safe while waiting for, boarding, riding and departing from a school bus.