Bus Inspections Keep School Kids Safe, On Time


While kids got a break from tests during the school year, their buses have been going through a series of exams throughout the summer.

Westerville City School buses went through all the checks from the outside to the inside, from the engine to the tires, to the safety features on the outside of the bus.

Randy Snyder with the transportation department knows how important the safety of these buses is to parents.

“We're transporting the most precious cargo, students,” Snyder said.

The seats students will use every day are tested along with the safety signs. They also make sure video cameras on the bus are working. Some have up to eight inside.

“The cameras on the bus, the mirrors inside the bus for the driver, the seat backs, the floor condition, the condition of the ceilings - they’re all checked.” Snyder said.

Another test on the bus is a physical test for the bus drivers. They practice picking up a 40 pound dummy and carrying it 100 feet off of the bus.

“In the event there's an emergency on the school bus we want to make sure drivers can assist students who aren't able to evacuate themselves,” Snyder said.

New drivers go through at least 30 hours of training, while experienced drivers take a refresher course every year.

“As a parent myself, I know when I would put my children on the bus that I want to make sure not only the driver is ready but also the bus they're getting on,” Snyder said.

Before the 116 buses roll out for the school year, there's one final inspection that has to be done.

“This sticker is the highway patrol stamp of approval for this school bus. It references it is ready for the 2013 and 2014 school year,” Snyder said.

To help students get used to riding the bus, first time school bus riders and parents are invited to attend the annual First Time Riders open house.

It will be held at Whittier Elementary School from 9 a.m. to noon on Thursday, August 1.