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March 21, 2012  |   Comments (3)   |   Post a comment

Ala. bill would restrict school bus driver cell phone use


MONTGOMERY, Ala. — The state House of Representatives passed legislation last week that would restrict cell phone use while drivers are operating school buses, The Associated Press reports.

Under the bill, bus drivers would only be permitted to use their phones if the bus is parked or to call in medical concerns, unsafe road conditions, threats to public safety, or mechanical problems that could harm the driver or students. The legislation would also ban the use of citizens band radio, two-way radios and hands-free devices, such as Bluetooth headsets.

The House approved the bill on a vote of 83 to 1, but it must be approved by the state Senate and signed by Gov. Robert Bentley before it could become law.

To read the full story, click here.

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Read more about: Alabama, cell phones

Why in the world would the legislature want to ban cb radios, two-way radios, and hands free devices?? Communication between a school bus and dispatch is vital for the safety of the children. I'm not understanding this legislation at all?

Max Christensen    |    Mar 26, 2012 09:41 AM

Cell phones, while dangerous when used irresponsibly and inappropriately, are invaluable tools when used correctly, for protecting our children while on school buses and special needs buses. Cell phones have become "smartphones" and now support several applications that ensure that children get on and off the right bus and at the right stop. They send messages to parents about the movement of their children when getting on and off the bus and communicate changes in times and issues that may have arisen. They are tools to ensure accurate ridership information for your Medicaid programs. And they may be the only connection to dispatch or help when minutes count. All of this requires minimal intervention on the part of the driver. If drivers won't follow established use protocols, remove them and replace them with responsible drivers who understand the gravity of their role and their responsibility and will respect proper cell phone use guidelines. Don't eliminate the technology - empower people to do better.

Judee Sibbitt    |    Mar 26, 2012 09:04 AM

In Missoula, MT our two way radios are very important to keep in touch with the office and messages of parents while we are out on a run. We transport 3 and 4 year olds for Headstart. Parents have to be at the meet site to pick up children. It is necessary to contact the school or the driver with messages when parents are running late. I feel that 2 way radios are necessary and ours are not overused.

Rita Bolton    |    Mar 26, 2012 08:04 AM

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