Both Sides of the School Bus Seat Belt Debate

First of all, we’d like to preface this blog by saying that we do not take sides in the great school bus seat belt debate. We are here to provide the safest, most comfortable, and cost-effective school bus solutions for school districts in Colorado and Nebraska, and we will continue to follow the guidelines set forth by the National Highway Transportation Safety Board (NHTSA), the State Department of Education, and School District Board Policy. That being said, we are paying attention, so let’s look at both sides of this ongoing debate.

The safest school buses in the industry
CoWest will always follow the guidelines set forth by the NHTSA, the State Department of Education. and School District Board Policy.
Image by NHTSA.gov

Ongoing studies and research

As the debate over whether seat belts in school buses are necessary, safe, dangerous, or redundant rages on, so does the research. However, numerous studies aren’t coming back with a clear cut answer since there are so many variables to consider, such as weather, the size of students, evacuation procedures, and road conditions. However, studies and research are going to continue, even as more and more states are considering school bus seat belt regulation.

The argument for school bus seat belts

Since we know that seat belts in cars have helped saved many lives and make us safer in our daily drivers, the logical conclusion would be that seat belts in school buses would also increase the safety of our kids. Not only will seat belts prevent students from being tossed about in the case of an accident, but seat belts will keep the student in their seat – even on smooth rides – and decrease the chance of kids moving about the bus and distracting the driver.

The arguments against school bus seat belts

School buses are already some of the safest forms of transportation available, even without seatbelts. Blue Bird school buses are designed to be safer than passenger vehicles in avoiding crashes and preventing injury. Not only do school bus drivers receive extensive training on safety and security, but the Blue Bird buses are built with reinforced sides, steel rub rails, and a custom designed passenger safety cage.

Pros and cons of school bus seat belts
Starting in summer 2017, new Blue Bird school buses will offer NextGen seats that easily convert to seat belts.

Some also fear that incorrect usage of seat belts can cause more harm than good.

The safest school buses for Nebraska and Colorado school districts

The Blue Bird buses are designed to keep your kids safe, and we will continue to improve on our design to maximize safety. However, if your school district decides that they want to include seat belts in your school buses, the Blue Bird School Buses have that option. This summer, the Blue Bird and Micro Bird are offering NextGen seats that are easily converted from regular seats to seats with belts.

Whatever side of the debate you are on, Blue Bird buses are the number one choice for schools across the nation.

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