NEW YORK – Most school-aged children use the bus to get to and from their classes each day, and it’s generally thought of as one of the safest modes of transportation. But safety advocates are urging parents and drivers to rethink safety – both on and off the school bus.
According to federal statistics, most accidents happen before or after a child has stepped off the bus. A Bronx bus accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes said these moments are some of the most dangerous times for children.
“Some drivers either don’t notice the flashing lights of a school bus, or they ignore them completely,” Bronx bus accident attorney Steve Barnes said. “It’s a growing problem across the country, and it’s putting many children at risk.”
The New York Association for Pupil Transportation (NYAPT) recently conducted a survey of 878 bus drivers that reported being passed 727 times in one day.
When applied to the more than 50,000 school buses on the road in New York State, drivers illegally passed yellow buses over 41,000 times each day.
It’s not just a problem in New York, either. Other states are also reporting a rise in the number of accidents involving school buses and passing vehicles. In Tampa, Florida, there’s an average of 486 accidents that result in 302 injuries and two deaths every year, WFTS reported. In some areas, accident rates have gone up 65-percent over the last five years. In DeKalb County, Georgia, bus drivers now average about 1.2 accidents each day, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
“School bus safety needs to be a priority for every single person that drives a vehicle,” Barnes said. “Passing a school bus with its lights on is illegal, and it’s unacceptable, because there are young lives at stake.”
Some school districts are considering attaching red-light cameras to their vehicles to catch negligent drivers in the act. In fact, North Carolina lawmakers have introduced a bill that would allow counties to adopt ordinances that would assess civil penalties to violators who pass a stopped school bus.
In many cases, these incidents result in close-calls that go unpunished, but some incidents end with heartache and frustration. If your child has been injured, the Bronx school bus accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes have worked on similar cases in all 50 states, and this experience has helped many families get significant compensation after an accident.
When a negligent driver ignores the flashing lights and injures your child, the Bronx bus accident attorneys at Cellino & Barnes can protect your rights and help your family get the best result possible from an injury claim.
Contact us for a free case evaluation.
Cellino & Barnes (800)888-8888