BOONE COUNTY, Mo. - In honor of National School Bus Safety Week, troopers are reminding drivers, parents and students what to do to help make sure children get to school safely.
The national safety week is from Oct. 22 through Oct. 26.
Troopers said one way they ensure bus safety is by inspecting school buses annually.
According to the 2018 school bus inspection report, three buses out of the two larger mid-Missouri school districts (Columbia and Jefferson City) had a defect, but only two were taken out of service. All together, inspectors didn't approve of five buses.
Troopers said parents should ask their children how they ride the school bus.
Officials said some basic school bus safety rules for children are:
- Pay attention to the surroundings while at the bus stop, and stay on the sidewalk or shoulder of the road.
- Be at the bus stop on time.
- Board the bus single file, without pushing.
- Stay seated while the bus is moving.
- Never put your head or any body part outside of the bus windows.
- Never throw anything out the windows.
- Keep aisles clear of books, lunch boxes, backpacks, musical instruments, etc.
- Talk quietly to your neighbor.
- If crossing the street after getting off the bus, stay at least 10 feet in front of the bus and look both ways before crossing the road.
- In case of an emergency, listen to the bus driver for instructions.
According to online Missouri State Highway Patrol records, in 2017, there were 869 crashes involving school buses statewide. Of those, five people were killed and 401 were injured.
Troopers advised drivers to follow state laws when it comes to driving safe near school buses. On a two-lane road, if a school bus is stopped and displaying warning signals, drivers must stop.
Drivers only to need stop on a four-lane road if they are behind the school bus when it stop with warning lights.