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NY School Bus Accident Serves as a Reminder to Drive Safely Around School Buses

Published May 24, 2012 by Scott Gottlieb, Injury Law Attorney

A school bus accident on I-81 near Watertown on Monday afternoon left two young students, the school bus driver and the transportation aide with minor injuries. However, according to New York police, the school bus driver avoided a more serious crash by keeping the bus he was driving under control after it was rear-ended by a car.

In April, we reminded New Yorkers of the state’s school bus safety laws through information from Operation Safe Stop. Now, our New York auto accident attorneys once again ask that drivers in Binghamton and throughout New York drive safely around school buses.

In the Monday afternoon accident, the school bus was traveling on I-81 near Watertown, when the driver of a Saab struck the rear driver’s side of the bus forcing the bus off the road, causing it to spin and tip on its side. The 29-year-old driver of the Saab was charged with imprudent speed, following too closely and moving from a lane unsafely, according to news reports.

According to the New York Association for Pupil Transportation (NYAPT), 2.3 million children ride New York school buses each day, and the NYAPT is “dedicated to the support, development and representation” of those children. In an effort to improve the safety of children and their bus drivers, the organization is an advocate for student and school bus safety, and focuses on educating the public regarding school bus laws.

Although the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that school buses are the safest mode of transportation for getting children back and forth to school, it also reports that 1,386 people have died in school transportation-related crashes since 2000 — an average of 139 fatalities per year. Family members that rely on the buses to get their children safely to and from school each day may find this number high, but the NHTSA reports school buses are designed to be safer than passenger vehicles and they keep nearly 17.3 million additional vehicles off the road each morning.

Some of the school bus safety features, as identified by the NHTSA, include: reinforced sides, bright color, cross-view mirrors, flashing lights and stop sign arms. The school bus drivers are also highly skilled and trained, according to the NHTSA. Drivers must be trained in student behavior management, rendering first-aid and security procedures, are screened for drug and alcohol use and are subject to frequent driving record checks.

While no amount of safety measures can prevent accidents from happening, New York drivers that obey the laws and stay focused and alert when driving near school buses can certainly help prevent them. We ask all drivers to practice safe driving at all times, but to be especially alert when children are around.

Contact Our Binghamton Accident Attorneys Today

Experience counts. If your child has suffered injuries as a result of a New York vehicle accident caused by a negligent driver, contact Scott C. Gottlieb, Injury Law Attorney, to help. Our New York personal injury law office handles all types of accident, injury and medical malpractice cases.

As you work on recovering from your injuries, let our Binghamton, New York accident attorney’s office take care of the rest, including the paperwork, insurance documents and other legal issues related to your accident. Contact our personal injury attorney today at (607) 304-4121 or use our online contact form. There is no charge for the consultation.

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