Little Rock, Arkansas- Today, the national association representing state directors of pupil transportation released the results of its 2nd annual survey on illegal passing of school buses. In 28 states throughout the country, about 20 percent of the nation’s school bus drivers participated in a one-day survey to report how many times motorists passed their stopped school buses illegally. Nearly 100,000 drivers reported that 88,025 vehicles passed their buses illegally on a single day. Throughout a 180-day school year, these sample results alone point to nearly 16 million violations by private motorists.
“There are over 480,000 school buses on the road each day in the United States,” said Mike Simmons, president of the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services. He added, “This survey captured only a fraction of the violations that bus drivers and other professionals in school transportation and law enforcement know are occurring each and every morning and afternoon. Students are far safer in school buses than the other ways they get to school, but when they are outside the bus, they are the most vulnerable. Any driver who passes a stopped school bus illegally is gambling with a child’s life.”
NASDPTS first coordinated the survey last year, and this year’s results are unfortunately consistent. In 2011, there were 76,685 motorists who illegally passed buses during the one-day survey. NASDPTS encourages state directors, local school districts, law enforcement agencies, legislators, citizens, and all motorists to use these disturbing results to help solve this ongoing threat to the safety of students. The association believes these results should trigger more safety countermeasures within states and at the national level, including greater motorist awareness, greater enforcement, and tougher, more uniform laws.
Complete information on the project, including the detailed survey results, can be found at www.nasdpts.org/stoparm or by contacting NASDPTS members Derek Graham (Derek.Graham@dpi.nc.gov) or Charlie Hood (Charlie.Hood@fldoe.org).
To view the press release, click here.