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The Hart Law Firm

Seat Belts on School Buses: The Never-Ending Debate

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Your Bedford personal injury attorney believes you should know and understand the safety measures taken on your child’s school bus. The debate regarding whether school buses should have seat belts has been ongoing for decades. There is some progress to report: small, Type A school buses must have shoulder and lap belts (3-point system). This new standard was required to be in effect by September 2011, per Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 222. 

Large school buses still are not required to have seat belts; however, many independent manufacturers are providing belts on their buses. Seat belts on large school buses remain an option due to the federal government stating they are the safest way for a child to arrive at school.

Why are large school buses considered safe?
Compartmentalization: passengers on a large bus are surrounded by energy-absorbing material—from the seats to the seat frame, to the actual design of the vehicle. These items were designed to provide a ‘compartment’ which absorbs or lessens the energy of the crash before the passenger hits any of these items.

Progress in Texas
A law was passed in 2007, with implementation on September 1, 2010, which required all new school buses to have seat belts. Some districts may not acquire these belts for a few more years simply because they do not need new buses right now. Other districts, such as Dallas County Schools, have already purchased buses equipped with seat belts.

The Bedford personal injury attorneys at The Hart Law Firm hope your child has a safe commute to and from school. If you or a loved one has been involved in a Bedford bus accident, please call us for a free consultation at (800) 856-2347, or order our free book to learn more about the representation you deserve.
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