How safe is traveling on a bus? According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), school buses are the safest vehicles on the road. The safety of other types of consumer buses varies based on a number of factors, including proper bus driver hiring and training, proper bus driver scheduling, routine vehicle maintenance, routine safety inspections and proper safety protocols. One thing is certain though- when a bus is involved in a crash, the consequences are often catastrophic.
Recent news headlines paint a very somber picture of bus safety in the northeast.
- March 2019: Driver Charged After 2 Die in NYC Bound Charter Bus Crash
- March 2019: New York Man Charged with Manslaughter After Police Consider Speed in Fatal Bus Crash
- March 2019: 4 Injured in Head-On School Bus Crash on Bear Mountain
- February 2019: School Bus Crashes into House
- January 2019: NYC Woman Dead, 21 Hurt in New Jersey Highway Crash Involving Bus
- January 2019: 14 Students Hurt in School Bus, Tractor Trailer Crash in NJ
A 2019 article published by the New York Times explores how safe buses really are, and what issues lead to bus crash injuries and fatalities. The article cites a lack of safety protections, “Serious train and bus accidents are rare. But when they happen, passengers [have] almost none of the protections considered standard on planes and cars. The National Transportation Safety Board has long recommended a variety of measures to improve passenger safety, including installing lap-shoulder seatbelts, requiring riders to buckle up and improving window safety and overhead baggage restraints.”
While implementing safety recommendations that could prevent serious injuries and fatalities seems like common sense, the New York Times reports regulators of popular transportation companies, like Greyhound and Amtrak, have yet to adopt the recommendations. In 2017, 44 people were killed in bus crashes. Many experts agree that number is too high. “ ‘Those 44 people could have been saved,’ said T. Bella Dinh-Zarr, a recently retired member of the safety board who helped lead major bus and train crash investigations.” – New York Times.
Bus companies are responsible for ensuring the safety of their riders and drivers. If a bus company’s negligence leads to a crash that caused you or someone you love to suffer serious injuries contact us today.