Please, pay attention
by, Mar 5th 2011 at 06:15 PM (566 Views)
As a school bus driver, this is truly our worst nightmare. The moment, the slow seconds, where we see disaster coming is the worst feeling in the world. We'd throw ourselves in front of that car to save your child, but we sit there helpless hoping somehow what we see potentially happening is avoided. I'm guessing it will be a time before that bus driver is able to get back behind the wheel.
I've had close calls with the kids I transport. It makes you feel like you are going to be sick.
I preach on a daily basis the importance of safety to the kids that ride. The seat is your seatbelt, stay in your seat, do not change seats while we are driving out the route. Keep your stuff in the seat with you. Should I have to hit the brakes - that backpack, saxophone, whatever is going to slide if not launch down the aisle. Don't mess around to the point where you distract me. Where do you want my attention kids? And so on and so forth.
But together with the kids following the safety rules, the driver doing their job safely we count on every other vehicle out there to do their part. School buses are like traffic lights - if you see yellow lights come on treat it like a traffic light turning yellow. And NO, I do not mean hit the gas to squeak through before it turns red. Get on the brakes and prepare to stop immediately. A good bus driver will never cause you to come to a screeching halt - unless you are not paying attention.
Red lights mean stop. And then stay that way until you see them go out. Don't creep up, don't slam on the gas when they go out. Even at stops where there are large numbers of students it takes a minute, literally, for the bus to start moving again.
With the triad of responsibility, you - the other driver on the road - is the one bus drivers can't control. We rely on you to safely get these kids to and from school. So do the parents, the families and friends, of every student who expect to see their child come home off the bus every day. Whether they do or not you are a part of making that happen.