When a bus stops in New Hampshire, other vehicles should also stop. However, not all drivers obey this rule, often due to distracted driving. CNN reports that this is such a problem now that getting off the bus after school and waiting for the bus in the morning is actually more dangerous than riding the bus.
In fact, school buses are considered the safest way for children to get to and from school. In 2015, fatal crashes involving school buses accounted for less than 1% of all fatal crashes. Nevertheless, school-age pedestrians accounted for over one-third of those who died. Some were even hit by the bus itself.
Perhaps the small ray of hope is that bus stop safety is not in decline. Rather, this seems to be a consistent trend that lawmakers hope to reduce over time. Some of the efforts have included strict speed limit enforcement in school zones, public education initiatives and efforts to reduce distracted driving.
Experts believe that better infrastructure may also be helpful. These may include the following:
- Pedestrian bridges
- Street lights
- Stop lights
NBC News also recommends that parents should consider walking their children to the bus stop. Being early may also help children to remain alert. When children are running behind time, just like adults, they may be less likely to pay attention. Finally, parents should consider teaching children to stand back from the curb. This keeps them safely out of the flow of traffic.
Speeding, distracted driving and other negative driving behaviors are costing lives all across America and leaving others with severe injuries. Ultimately, change may require cooperation of all Americans to pay attention to the road, follow the rules of the road and avoid operating a vehicle when under the influence.