The safe transportation of our nation’s children to-and-from school has come racing to the forefront as a national movement throughout the past decade.
National safety initiatives have been created and the Safe Routes to School National Partnership established, among other non-profit organizations, solely to foster the safe transportation of school children.
These efforts and organizations give parents a voice, and school officials and local leaders the tools to take it upon themselves to place traffic guards, intelligent warning systems and advanced technologies in highly trafficked school zones.
Yet, after all these focused national and local efforts there still leaves room for improvement — as shown in a fact sheet released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) Center for Statistics and Analysis.
The compiled data focuses on school-transportation-related crashes from 2005-2014, and defines those crashes as accidents that involve a school bus body vehicle or non-school bus functioning as a school bus.
Below are some key findings published in the fact sheet:
- 304 school-age children (18 and younger) died in a school-transportation-related crash
- The two most deadly hours for school-age pedestrians were
7 - 8 a.m. and 3 – 4 p.m.
- Of the 111 school-aged pedestrians who died in school-transportation-related crashes:
- 61 percent were struck by school buses
- 36 percent by other motor vehicle
- 3 percent by vehicles functioning as school buses
- In total 1,332 people of all ages were killed in school-transportation-related crashes from 2005-2014, an average of 133 fatalities per year, of those deaths:
- 71 percent were occupants of other motor vehicles involved.
- 21 percent were considered nonoccupants – bicyclists,
- 8 percent were occupants of school transportation vehicles