WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) will address two fatal school bus crashes and consider possible safety recommendations in a board meeting next week.
In the Tuesday meeting, NTSB members will determine the probable cause of the February 2012 school bus and truck crash near Chesterfield, N.J. One student was killed and five were seriously injured when their bus collided with a roll-off truck and then struck a pole.
Also during the meeting, NTSB members will hear information on the March 2012 incident in Port St. Lucie, Fla., in which a school bus was hit by a truck-tractor semitrailer. In that crash, one student was killed and four sustained serious injuries.
In an announcement about the meeting, the NTSB said that because of the similarities between the two crashes, "school bus occupant protection issues from both crashes will be reviewed, and the board will consider possible recommendations to improve school bus safety nationwide."
One key similarity is that the buses in both crashes were equipped with lap belts. In a presentation at last year's National Association for Pupil Transportation Summit, NTSB Vice Chairman Christopher Hart said that the lap belt factor made the crashes good candidates for investigation.
Hart also said at the time that the NTSB has "not been in favor of lap-only seat belts," although the announcement about the upcoming meeting did not specifically mention lap belts.
Here are the details on the meeting:
Event: Board Meeting
Date/Time: Tuesday, July 23, 2013, 9:30 a.m. EST
Location: NTSB Board Room and Conference Center
429 L'Enfant Plaza, SW
Washington, DC 20594
There will be a live webcast of the meeting, with a link to be made available on this page shortly before the start of the meeting.