Presentation on theme: "School Bus Driver Training"— Presentation transcript:
1 School Bus Driver Training Unit C Student Loading and UnloadingThe number of fatalities involving school buses is very low, but when fatalities occur, they most often occur during loading and unloading.In Pennsylvania, from , 3 students were killed while entering or leaving the school bus.The Kansas State Department of Education conducts an annual “National School Bus Loading and Unloading Survey” resulting in a collection of fatality crash records provided by the state agencies responsible for school transportation safety and/or crash records. Only those fatalities involving school children in or around the loading or unloading areas of a school bus or transit bus are included in this survey. Onboard fatalities are excluded. A link to these surveys is provided in the Unit C Lesson Summary.Loading and unloading maneuvers expose students and drivers to many hazards. You must be aware of the proper procedures for both driving the bus and maintaining student behavior while performing these maneuvers. Driving procedures can be found in Units F and G.This Unit presents procedures for maintaining safety during loading and unloading. These procedures include controlling traffic, assisting students crossing streets or highways, seating the students, and loading and unloading the students. The procedures below also cover proper use of the eight-way light system at the bus stop.
2 ObjectivesAt the end of this session school bus operators will be able to:Recognize why loading and unloading are the most dangerous situations when transporting studentsKnow laws and regulations regarding the use of the eight-way light systemDemonstrate proper loading and unloading procedures
3 Loading and Unloading Fatalities Student was waiting in his parent’s vehicle across the street from the school bus stop. As the school bus slowed to approach the stop with its amber lights flashing, the student exited his mother’s vehicle and darted in front of an oncoming vehicle. The student was struck and killed. (6-year-old male)A student was waiting at his bus stop when a car drove up on the sidewalk striking the student from behind. The student was killed. (10-year-old male)The next few slides contain a sample of a few unloading and loading fatalities that have occurred over the last few years. They are taken from Publication 117.You can read these and discuss each with the trainees to emphasize the importance of safety in the loading and unloading area.Be sure to solicit input from your students about “near misses” they have had.
4 Loading and Unloading Fatalities A student exited the school bus and crossed the street. The bus driver completed student drop off and pulled up to make a left turn. As the driver was turning, the student chose to run toward the bus and slipped on the ice and slid under the bus, being run over by the left rear duals. (9-year-old male)
5 Loading and Unloading Fatalities Student was exiting her bus after dark at her bus stop. An oncoming vehicle failed to stop for the flashing school bus lights and struck her with the left front bumper. There was no evidence that the driver applied the brakes. The student died without regaining consciousness. (5-year-old female)Student was run over and killed by the left rear wheels of her school bus after she had exited the bus. (5-year-old female)
6 Loading / Unloading Area Danger zonesTools to mitigate the dangerEducationSafety devicesWithin the complete school transportation scenario, children are safest on the bus. Statistically, riding the bus is safer than walking to school, bicycling to school, or riding in parents’ cars.But, within the school bus transportation scenario, loading and unloading are the most dangerous components for children.
7 Danger Zone Area of greatest risk 10 ft area immediately around the busTwo most dangerous zonesJust in front of busBehind the bus to the buses’ rear wheelsTwo significant risksChildren struck by passing motoristChildren run over by busDuring loading and unloading student passengers are outside of, and sometimes near to, the bus. They are in danger of being struck by passing motorists and the bus itself. Sometimes students can be unpredictable and make decisions that are not the safest, like coming back to the bus because they forgot something. A driver has to be vigilant at all times.
9 Tools to Mitigate the Danger EducationLeft to the school bus driverIncludes :Bus stop behaviorBoardingOn-board behaviorExitingSafe arrival at homeTwo methods are at the school bus driver’s disposal for mitigating the risks to student passengers: education and safety devices on the bus. There are five components to safety education. Children need to learn:How to wait at the bus stopHow to safely board the busHow to behave on-board the busHow to safely exit the busHow to safely move from the bus stop to home.This education is commonly left to the school bus driver. Indeed, this education begins the first time students approach the bus and may require reinforcing as students develop and grow.School buses in Pennsylvania are equipped with an eight-way light system, that is, two amber lights to indicate slowing and two red lights to indicate a stopped condition, located on the front and back of the bus.The bus also has a STOP sign that swings out from the side during the stop condition (side stop arm), and a crossing bar at the front of the bus to guide children away from walking in front of the bus so closely that the driver is unable to see them.
10 Tools to Mitigate the Danger Safety devicesEight-way light systemSide stop signCrossing arm
11 Loading / Unloading Procedures Load students at designated bus stopsStudents should stand 10’+ back from edge of highwayStudents should be on-timeDon’t speed to make up lost timeLook for missing students – they may be rushing to the busSAFETY BEFORE SCHEDULEThere are general concepts associated with loading and unloading students in addition to the actual loading procedures.Load and unload students only at designated bus stops. Do not change bus stops without approval from your supervisor.Students should wait at a designated place. This place should be at least 10 feet back from the edge of the highway at the approved bus stop. Students may need occasional reminding that they should wait until the bus is completely stopped before moving toward the door.Students should be reminded to be on-time, which typically means being at the bus stop 5 minutes before the scheduled time. Maintaining the bus schedule requires cooperation between the driver and the students riding the bus.If running late, do not speed in an attempt to make up time. Always put safety before schedule.If you arrive at a bus stop early or on-time and a student you are expecting is not there, proceed with caution. The student may be a little late and rushing to get to the bus.
12 Loading Procedures Approach and check Stop Load Check and proceed The complete loading procedure includes these major steps.The following slides break each of these steps into their sub-steps.
13 Approach and Check Evaluate bus stops while slowing on approach PedestriansTrafficPeople who do not belongLook for late-arriving studentsActivate amber flashing lightsBetween 150 and 300 feet before bus stopBrake with transmission in gearCheck trafficGive care to the road surface as you approach studentsExercise extreme caution when approaching a bus stop and preparing to stop. The bus is part of a larger traffic context, but during the approach to a bus stop the bus begins to exercise control of its context in order to provide the safest loading circumstance for the students waiting to board. The school bus driver has to be aware of the movements of the traffic to be sure other road users are responding to the control the bus is taking.During an approach to a bus stop, the driver must be aware of:TrafficRoad conditionsPeople at the stop, including students possibly others that do not belongStudents approaching the bus stop.Activate the amber flashing lights between 150’ and 300’ to signal other road users that you are slowing the bus in preparation to making a stop.Remind students that their safety is increased if they remain back, away from the edge of the roadway as the bus comes to a stop, and during weather events that negatively impact roadway conditions.
14 Stop Come to a complete stop Apply the parking brake Place the transmission in neutralOpen the front door slightly, activating red lights and stop armCheck trafficOpen door completelyAfter coming to a full stop, setting the parking brake, and placing the transmission in neutral, open the front doors slightly. Doing so activates the red flashing lights of the eight-way light system, as well as the swing-arm mounted STOP sign and the crossing bar. This will signal to other road users that the bus has stopped, and that they may have responsibilities to stop, as well.Step 4 under STOP indicates for drivers to open the front entrance door (service door) slightly. Note that this may not be possible with some air assist doors. Drivers should note that doors on some of the newer buses cannot open slightly – it is all or nothing. Some do have an override switch, and drivers should look for this when learning about their bus.When you are convinced that the traffic that must stop has done so, the front doors may be opened fully to admit the students at the bus stop.
15 LoadTeach your students not to move toward the bus until the bus stops and the door opens.Watch for illegally passing motorists!Students should board the busSlowlySingle fileUsing the handrailCount studentsSeat students according to your transportation company’s or school district’s policySafe boarding begins with the driver teaching students the fine points of bus boarding. Make sure students know:They should not move toward the bus until the bus stops, the door opens fully, and you signal to boardThey must be able to see your face when they cross the street in front of the busThey must look both ways before crossing the streetYou must be alert to warn students of illegally moving traffic. Also, count students as they board the bus.Students must be taught to be orderly when entering the bus and not to crowd or push.If you have a concern with a particular boarding location, tell your supervisor or school district Transportation Director.
16 Seating Seating capacity is limited Passengers may not stand Seating charts may be helpfulIf using a seating chart, consider:Your routeStudents’ medical needsStudents’ agesEvacuationNeed for supervision
17 Check and Proceed Prepare to leave Proceed to next stop Account for expected studentsCheck all mirrors around the busShut the front door, de-activating safety devicesProceed to next stopCheck mirrorsPlace transmission into gearRelease parking brakeCheck child safetyRe-check mirrorsProceedPreparing to leave a bus stop requires two main tasks:Account for your passengersRelease control of the traffic context back to traffic smoothly and safely.Count your passengers as they enter the bus. Know who is to be on the bus. Double check for late-runners before proceeding.Make sure all passengers are seated and ready for the bus to be in motion.Check and re-check traffic as the bus transmission is re-engaged, the parking brake is released, and you re-enter traffic on your way to the next stop.
18 Unloading Procedures Approach and check Stop Unload Check and proceed Unloading your passengers can be more dangerous than loading them. You must be sure students get safely out of the danger zone, and those crossing the street do so safely. During loading, students are typically gathered at a designated loading zone at the bus stop, while during unloading students are moving through the danger zones of the bus as they leave the bus stop.Use only the designated bus stops.A simulated or actual student discharge is part of the driver recertification skills exam. The following are considered automatic failures.Not activating amber lights 150’-300’ in advance of discharge;Not completely stopping, applying the parking brake, and putting the transmission in neutral;Not checking traffic;Not checking all mirrors around the bus; andNot checking child safety and rechecking mirrors before proceeding.Drivers should be made aware of all of the steps in the loading and unloading processes. They should know that in addition to the above automatic failures, a failure on this part of their exam can ALSO occur if they accumulate three or more errors.
19 Approach and Check Slow down in preparation for the stop Use mirrors to check traffic conditionsActivate the amber flashing lights between 150’ and 300’ to signal the upcoming stop to other road usersDo not allow students to stand until the bus is fully stoppedCheck traffic to be sure the stop is safe
20 Stop Come to a complete stop Set the parking brake Place the transmission in neutralOpen door slightly, activating the red lights and stop arm.Check trafficOpen door completelyStep 4 under STOP indicates for drivers to open the front entrance door (service door) slightly. Note that this may not be possible with some air assist doors. Drivers should note that doors on some of the newer buses cannot open slightly – it is all or nothing. Some do have an override switch, and drivers should look for this when learning about their bus.NOTE: During the examination a driver with an air assist door must be able to verbalize “Open door slightly, activating red lights and stop arm.”
21 UnloadPermit students to leave the bus only at assigned stops, unless they have written permissionAllow students to exitOrderlyCount passengersObserve their actions after leaving the bus to be sure they move away from the danger zonesThe National Safety Council does offer tips to students who have to cross the street in front of the bus. They recommend that the student walk at least ten feet ahead of the bus along the side of the road until you can turn around and see the driver. Students should always make sure that the driver can see them. They should walk across the road keeping an eye out for sudden traffic changes and stay away from the bus’ rear wheels at all times.The National Safety Council also recommends procedures for safely crossing the street. They indicate that children should always stop at the curb or the edge of the road and look left, then right, and then left again before crossing. They should continue looking in this manner until they are safely across. This is especially important when crossing in front of a school bus. If student’s vision is blocked by a parked car or other obstacle, they should move out to where drivers can see them and they can see other vehicles -- then stop, and look left-right-and left again.
22 Check and Proceed WHEN IN DOUBT, CHECK IT OUT! Check all mirrors around the busBe sure students are not returning to the busFor traffic and pedestriansShut the front door to de-activate the safety devicesProceed to the next stopCheck mirrorsPut the transmission in gearRelease the parking brakeCheck child safetyRe-check mirrorsProceedWHEN IN DOUBT,CHECK IT OUT!Your mirrors cover the bus front and sides well, but nothing covers the back or under the bus. This is important to know because if children return to the bus or crawl under the bus to get what they dropped, you can't see them. The most dangerous blind spot is around the wheels because if you miss a child here, the chances of a serious incident are very high.In the extreme circumstance where you needed to get out and check under the bus, you must secure the bus and be VERY mindful of students left on board. Emphasize that checking around and under the bus may slow the run, but the consequences of failing to account for all students and proceeding with someone under the bus are infinitely worse.
23 Unique Dangers of Loading and Unloading Dropped or forgotten objectsHandrail dangersSchools (location)Students left on the bus1. Dropped or Forgotten Objects: Always focus on students as they approach the bus and watch for any who disappear from sight. Students may drop an object near the bus during loading and unloading. Stopping to pick up the object, or returning to pick up the object, may cause the student to disappear from the driver’s sight at a very dangerous time. Students should be told to leave any dropped items and move to a safe place out of danger and attempt to get the driver’s attention to retrieve it;2. Handrail Dangers: Students have been injured or killed when clothing, accessories, or even parts of their body get caught in the handrail or door as they exit the bus. You need to closely observe all students exiting the bus to confirm that they are in a safe location prior to moving the bus;3. Schools: Another area where serious incidents occur is the loading and unloading zones at the schools. You as a driver must train your students not to push and shove other students when they get on or off the bus. Teach the students to use handrails and go directly to their seats and face forward at all times;4. Students Left on the Bus: After your last drop off, in a safe location, make sure to walk your bus and check for sleeping or hiding students before returning to the yard.
24 Enforcing the School Bus Stopping Law Title 75, Section 3345 of the Pennsylvania Vehicle CodeOn highways not separated by a physical barrierTraffic in all directions stops at least 10’ before busUntil every child has entered the bus (loading)Until every child has reached the sidewalk or side of highway (unloading)On highways separated by a physical barrierTraffic in same direction stopsFor entire Section 3345 visit and click on School Bus under the Information Centers and then Pennsylvania Vehicle Code. Click on Chapter 33 and scroll through until you reach Section 3345.
25 Enforcing the School Bus Stopping Law ALL TRAFFIC MUST STOPMust StopRed lights activated
26 Enforcing the School Bus Stopping Law Must StopRidged/Grooved Roadway surfaceRed lights activated
27 Enforcing the School Bus Stopping Law When a school bus is stopped at an intersection to load or unload studentsVehicles approaching the intersection from any direction must stopEmergency vehicles must also stop if the red lights are flashing. After stopping, they may proceed:Only after exercising ‘due diligence’ and caution for the safety of the studentsOnly if they do not risk student safetyIf someone violates these laws:First, make sure students are safe!Second, note the license number, color, and type of vehicle, as well as the time and location of the incident and identity or description of the driver (as much as you can tell).Third, deliver a signed, written report within 48 hours to state or local police with jurisdiction where the incident occurred.
28 Enforcing the School Bus Stopping Law Must StopRed lights activated
29 OTHER School Buses When lights are flashing, STOP! Exception: median barrier on divided highway
30 Scenario 1A school district has a bus stop assigned to 12 Main Street where it has been for years. This year, a new family at 18 Main Street insists on having their child wait in their driveway 3 houses down from the existing stop. Since the student is in Kindergarten, the bus driver decides to add the extra stop since it will not take too much additional time. Is this ok?Use this for discussion in the class. The answer is No - load students only at designated bus stops approved by the school board. NEVER change a bus stop without approval by your supervisor. Student loading zones should be on the right side of the highway where visibility is clear. Refer to Chapter 104 of Title 67 for loading zone standards.
31 Scenario 2You’re on your afternoon route, dropping off elementary school students. It’s pouring rain. Many of your riders are out sick, so you’re running a little early because you don’t have as many stops to make. As you approach the next stop, you see the student’s mother one block away from the stop approaching with an umbrella. Since only her child gets off at this stop, you pass the designated stop and stop a block away where the mother is waiting with an umbrella so the child doesn’t get soaked. Is this ok?Use this for discussion in the class. The answer is No - load students only at designated bus stops approved by the school board. NEVER change a bus stop without approval by your supervisor. Student loading zones should be on the right side of the highway where visibility is clear. Refer to Chapter 104 of Title 67 for loading zone standards.For those that thought it was ok, what happens if a child slips and gets hurt getting off the bus? Do you think the driver could be blamed because it wasn’t the designated stop?What happens if a car illegally passes the stopped school bus and the child is struck by a car. Do you think the bus driver is partially responsible?