Child Fatally Injured When School Bus Flips
Last week, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported on a terribly sad Georgia school bus accident. With little detail but that the bus flipped on its side after traveling on a downhill curve on the road, we learned that a six year old child died after being taken to the hospital. The tragedy of one child being fatally injured is extremely painful for all involved. The community and her family are most certainly going through a very difficult time. Her classmates will need support after witnessing this bus accident. Thankfully, the other children on the bus were not injured seriously. Several of them and the driver had minor injuries only. This type of bus accident can happen anywhere, from Gwinnett County and across the state. When it does, there is great sadness in its wake.
When we send our children to school on the school bus, it is unthinkable that they might not return home safely. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gathers statistics on many aspects of our highway safety. The school bus statistics gathered over a nearly ten year period show that school buses are relatively safe. Although we all would prefer that no child be harmed on a school bus, there are about 130 school bus fatalities per year in our country. A child is more likely to sustain a fatal injury in other types of vehicles than a school bus. These vehicles are built to protect the occupants.
School Bus Seat Belts are Not Required by Law
According to NHTSA, school kids are far more likely to be injured being driven to school in a passenger vehicle than being taken in a school bus. School buses are specifically mandated to have inherent safety features. For example, their color is most visible on the road. The seats create a compartmentalized protection for kids. The more dangerous part of the school bus experience is getting on and off the bus, which is why all states require the stop arms that are meant to keep drivers from driving past the bus while kids are present.