MICHIGAN CITY | National School Bus Safety Week is October 15-19, and Michigan City Area Schools is once again joining school bus industry officials nationwide to highlight the importance of school bus safety.
“We’re extremely proud of our drivers, monitors, and mechanics – and our safety record,” says Sue Harrison, Director of Transportation for MCAS. “This week gives us an opportunity to celebrate our success, and to remind motorists and students of safe procedures.”
This year’s theme for National Bus Safety Week is “I See the Driver, the Driver Sees Me,” emphasizing that students should stay out of the “danger zone” by making eye contact with the driver and standing at least 10 feet away from the bus. “We also tell children that if something falls under or near the bus, they should tell the driver or bus monitor,” says Val Skwiat, MCAS Trainer and Bus Safety Specialist. “They should never try to pick it up themselves!”
To highlight Bus Safety Week, MCAS bus drivers and monitors will make presentations to students at elementary schools about bus safety and bullying. Middle and high school students will hear safety tips, along with bus trivia and jokes, during bus rides and morning announcements at school.
“Bus Safety Week is also a good time to remind the driving public to stop when the school bus lights flash red and the stop arm is extended,” says Skwiat. “Unfortunately there are motorists out there who do not stop, and this is putting children in danger.”
The MCAS Transportation Department offers these tips for students who ride the school bus:
- Check both ways for cars before you step off the bus.
- Always walk in front of the bus. Never walk behind it!
- Be sure the bus driver can see you, and wait for the driver’s signal before crossing the street.
- Stand five “giant steps” away from the bus (about 10 feet) when waiting to board or after getting off the bus.
- If something drops under the bus, tell the driver. Never try to pick it up yourself!
- Stay in your seat and sit quietly so that the driver is not distracted.
- While waiting for the bus, stay in a safe place away from the street.