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Early Reports from 2018-2019 School Year Show Troubling Spike in Students Killed While Loading, Unloading School Buses

A recent article published by School Transportation News (STN) provided an initial overview of school bus-related injuries and deaths for the 2018-2019 school year using information compiled from news reports nationwide.

According to the article, five students, one adult volunteer and five bus drivers were killed while riding a school bus last school year. These numbers reflect data found by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which indicates an average of four to six school bus passengers are killed each year. However, STN also found 70 injuries and 17 deaths caused by vehicles illegally passing school buses or hitting pedestrians at school bus stops. This alarming statistic is the highest number of pedestrian deaths caused by vehicles near school buses or bus stops since the Kansas Department of Education National School Bus Loading and Unloading Survey for the 2008-2009 school year (18 fatalities) and the 2004-2004 school year (20 fatalities).

“Smart innovation and technology can help prevent tragedies like these,” says Jane Prosch-Jensen, Vice President of Government Relations at Redflex. “Photo enforcement deters dangerous driving behaviors and therefore protects school children, educators and bus drivers, ultimately making our roadways safer for everyone.”

The article pointed out two tragic incidents in Indiana, happening within mere hours of each other. Three siblings were killed as they attempted to board their bus and were struck by an illegally passing vehicle. Only a day prior, another vehicle struck and killed a 10-year-old student while illegally driving past a bus. During both incidents, the school bus stop arm and warning lights were displayed.

Redflex’s stop-arm enforcement solution, Student Guardian, utilizes the company’s cutting-edge technology to automatically detect illegal passing incidents. It can capture images and video across multiple lanes and in low light or adverse weather conditions. Learn more about Student Guardian.