This case involves a wreck between a passenger car and a school bus. The school bus driver made a left-hand turn from a stop sign onto a superior roadway without properly observing oncoming traffic. The school bus turned in front of the driver and collided with the vehicle. The crash caused serious injuries to several of the children on the bus. Following the accident, an investigation revealed that the driver had been involved in several prior car accidents and had failed portions of vehicle training specific to judgment and abilities. An expert in school bus safety management was sought to review the matter and discuss whether the bus company management deviated from safety protocols.
Question(s) For Expert Witness
- 1. What follow-up training and re-training should be done in order to ensure driver and passenger safety?
- 2. What are the proper protocols that should be taken after a driver has such an accident?
Expert Witness Response E-008398
I have 33+ years experience with major city transit in the roles of bus operator, lead training bus and bus simulator instructor, director of transportation, and the National Safety Council member. A comprehensive look at the collision report, latest refresher training (if any), and driving record of the school bus operator would determine what type of corrective action measures to implement. In this case, the school bus operator should have been taken out of service while awaiting medical test results. A hearing should be conducted to determine if the collision was preventable. If the collision was deemed preventable, then the level of discipline (from suspension to dismissal) and its implementation would be determined. The length of time employed as an operator for the company and how many collisions and incidents attributed to the operator would also need to be evaluated. I have administered corrective action during bus operator training classroom sessions.