by HANNAH DURBIN '19
If you have ever stepped onto a big yellow monster on wheels, then you are not alone. In fact, you would be on one of the 480,000 buses that run daily. These vessels transport kids ranging from pre-k to grade 12 and have become icons of school. Amidst the blur of stress, excitement, dread, longing, and everything else going on, it is understandable to not question the true safety of your only means of transportation. Bree Wyenandt ’19 said school buses are what she has always known and therefore can’t be dangerous. Grace Kruis ’19 also feels they are classics and have been around for so long without any real issues. Luckily, many of their ideals hold up. Recent statistics claim these automobiles are 7 times safer than the average passenger car. The buses also help the environment as less car exhaust is present. Another plus is that every child, no matter their financial situation, is able to have a reliable mode of transportation. Expert tips to maximize your ride include staying in your seat at all times and making sure to maintain your “inside voice” in order to minimize distractions for the driver. Not eating while the bus is moving is also important as choking hazards are especially high for younger children. Morgan McGee ’18 rides the bus almost daily and is one who does not feel so safe during her ride. She claims her bus driver is “reckless” and “makes kids fall out of their seats.” Seat belts are another controversial topic and are only issued to the front two seats. Some states now legally require the bus to be fully equipped with them, including Texas and New York. The only issue with seat belts is if the bus tips over, they are a fire hazard. Overall, school buses can be very beneficial to the environment and help to ensure everyone is able to safely get to school. Certain actions such as standing during your ride or screaming can make the risk factor increase, but it is important to be aware of your surroundings.