Georgia celebrates National School Bus Safety Week from October 16-20, 2017, and Georgia School Bus Driver/Bus Monitor Appreciation Day on Monday, October 16th. School and safety advocates throughout the Peach State are using the week as an opportunity to highlight the importance of school bus safety. The 2017 theme for the week, #Stoponred, reminds students, parents and motorists of the important role each plays in ensuring that students are protected while on the bus and at the school bus stop. One key factor in protecting Georgia’s students rests with motorists obeying the law and stopping for Georgia’s school buses as students board and exit. Drivers should also be reminded that obeying the law is just not enough. Children are unpredictable; motorists must have an overall heightened safety awareness. Motorists should expect the unexpected as children wait at bus stops and as they get on and off the school bus.
Melissa Wandall, President of the National Coalition for Safer Roads says, “Please pledge to drive MINDFULLY! Inattentiveness while driving around school buses is injuring, harming and killing our children. Our children are our most vulnerable road users and our highest priority is to protect them. Creating mindfulness, alert driving habits contribute to a better quality of life for these children. Let’s all work together to achieve LESS victims and LESS violators. Be a part of the solution #STOP On Red!”
“When transportation is required, school buses are the safest way for students to get to and from school,” said Rick Grisham, Executive Director of Transportation for the Cobb County School District. “This week is an excellent time to teach and reiterate to students and parents simple measures they can take while going to and from the bus stop, getting on and off the bus, and riding in the bus. It also gives us a chance to thank and honor the professional school bus drivers and monitors who devote themselves to transporting our most precious cargo,” stated Grisham.
For years, school buses have provided safe access to learning for Georgia’s school children through secure and dependable transportation. The safety of the yellow school bus is unparalleled by any other means of automotive transportation. School buses meet state and federal safety specifications. In addition, all public school bus operators receive rigorous, specialized training on a variety of topics before they take the wheel behind the bus.
More than one million students ride the school bus in Georgia twice each day, with more than 25 million school children transported in 480,000 school buses nationwide.