Education Official Says Seatbelts Won't Make Buses Safer
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Education Official Says Seatbelts Won't Make Buses Safer

Date: October 2, 2007
By: Courtney Cox
State Capitol Bureau

Intro: Six students were injured today in a Jefferson County bus accident. The accident has renewed debate over the question of whether to provide seat belts on school buses.

RunTime:
OutCue: SOC

The the issue of seat belts for school buses had been pushed by Governor Matt Blunt earlier in his administration.

But the idea ran into strong opposition from local schools.

Kelly Hopkins is the Director of Education Policy for the Missouri School Boards' Association.

She says seat belts on buses do not necessarily make students safer.

Actuality:  BUS1.WAV
Run Time: 00:15
Description: "While intuitively, most of us think well in cars seat belts make us safer, the evidence had always said that in school buses that's not true because of the compartmentalization. It's that seat belts don't always make you safer."

For the last three years, proposals to require seat belts in news school buses have failed even to win committee approval in Missouri's legislature.

From the state capitol, I'm Courtney Cox.  


Intro: Six students were injured today in a Jefferson County bus accident. Courtney Cox has more on bus safety.  RunTime:
OutCue: SOC

Missouri education officials say that school buses are a safe mode of transportation for students.

Tom Quinn is a director for the Missouri Education Department.

He says students are safer riding to school in buses than in regular vehicles.

 

Actuality:  QUINN2.WAV
Run Time: 00:10
Description: "We know the data out there indicates that buses are the safest form of land transportation. They are about 8 times safer than a regular vehicle."


Quinn says that current bus safety requirements are minimal, and that policies regarding safety belts are left to individual school districts.

In the last few years, efforts to require seat belts in school buses have made little headway in Missouri's legislature.

From the state capitol, I'm Courtney Cox.