Keeping students and motorists safe during the school year

Across Northeast Kansas the school year is getting underway. Manhattan on Tuesday – Topeka 501 on Wednesday – Seaman Thursday to name just a few.

School bus safety starts before your child even gets on the bus.

“We have driver safety training that goes on throughout the year, in fact we’ve already had our first training for this year,” Martin Weishaar, Director of Communications at the Auburn-Washburn District, says.

But bus drivers aren’t the only ones who need to know the bus safety rules, students also need to know them.

“Safety rules include you know watching for cars and being careful getting on and off the bus,” Weishaar says.

Some rules include getting to the bus stop early, wait for the bus to come to a complete stop before boarding, stay seated while the bus is moving and keep all objects out the bus aisle.

Safety isn’t only for students and bus drivers but also for the other drivers on the road. Part of it is something every driver is supposed to know.

“You need to remain stopped until that bus actually starts moving again, so that’s the best thing to do, wait for the lights to go off, wait for the bus stop moving,” Lt. Josh Kellerman with the Kansas Highway Patrol, says.

For the next few days expect the roadways frequently used by school buses to have more traffic then usual. School bus drivers will drive slower, and make more stops as they get used to their new routes. So motorists need to be alert.

“Because yes if you start crossing, you start driving around that bus on the right or left side side you run the risk of striking a child,” Kellerman says.

As the patrol and parents will tell you, safety first. Students who don’t follow the rules can face a variety of consequences, which vary by district.

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