Are Some Bus Drivers Protecting Students or Putting Them at More Risk?

With the increase in accidents involving children crossing the street after getting off a school bus, some bus drivers have been doing something a little different to try to protect students.

The drivers are choosing to position their bus in the middle of the roadway, straddling the center line when picking up or discharging students. While some believe that this may be helping to protect children, others believe that it may be putting students at more risk.

Below we have shared several pros and cons of stopping a school bus in the middle of the roadway while dropping off and picking up children. We invite you to read through them, and maybe come up with some of your own, then decide if you think it protects students or puts them at risk.

Some ways it can protect students.

  • A school bus in the middle of the road may be more noticeable than one that stays in the proper lane.
  • A school bus in the middle of the road can possibly prevent other vehicles from passing on some narrow roadways.
  • If another driver is distracted and doesn’t notice the bus, a school bus in the middle of the road can provide more protection to a child than nothing at all.

Some ways it may not protect students or put them at more risk.

  • A head-on collision possibly injuring or killing students on the bus could be caused If a distracted driver doesn’t see the bus in the middle of the road.
  • Distracted drivers and drivers in a rush with no consideration for others still pass busses in the middle of the road.
  • Offset crashes can cause more injuries than an accident where vehicles squarely impact each other.

In addition to the pros and cons mentioned, stopping a bus or any other vehicle in the middle of the roadway is also currently illegal in most areas. Some people have also suggested that perhaps putting sirens or something similar on school buses could help better alert drivers. Others have said that increasing fines and having stronger punishments for distracted driving and passing a bus might help.

If you can think of any other pros, cons, or other ideas that can help protect students boarding or exiting school buses, leave them in the comments.

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