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September 2010 Issue


Defensive Driving Principles and How to Teach Them

By Claire Atkinson

After instituting a defensive driving focus in its training program, one district decreased reportable accidents by 33 percent.

Blake Krapf Named Contractor of the Year

The Krapf Bus Companies CEO has been a key figure in state and national associations while growing his family’s business. He recently secured a groundbreaking contract to privatize a school district operation in Virginia.

Is Your Fleet Ready for Winter?

The season’s weather can create dangerous driving conditions for employees and slippery bus steps for students, but products are available to help eliminate these hazards. Manufacturers of automatic tire chains, a traction sander and a step heater discuss their features, safety benefits and installation options.

NSTA Convention Features Notable News, Events

The association reveals that the Transportation Security Administration has completed its pupil transportation security assessment. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s new initiative to improve large bus and truck safety is discussed. Attendees also celebrate two industry veterans who are retiring.

Involving Physical Therapists in Pupil Transportation

Physical and occupational therapists are a great asset to an operation. Help them to see the critical role they play in assisting with the transport of special-needs students by soliciting their expertise on body mechanics, disabilities and mobility devices. Ensure that they participate in evacuation training and drills.

Editorials

To fee or not to fee?

It seems counterintuitive to deter districts from using fees to keep their bus programs running. If a district can’t afford to continue providing free rides and has to cut transportation, no one wins.

More and more alternatives

There’s clearly still a lot of room for growth in alternative fuel use. Fortunately, the vehicle options for pupil transportation operations continue to grow.

NAPT News & Views

Much work is being done to promote the benefits of yellow school buses since U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood approved the establishment of a public education campaign. Among the efforts is a partnership between NHTSA, the U.S. Department of Education, the American School Bus Council and NAPT to work on developing educational materials.

Tips for enhancing efficiency

Efficiency in a school transportation operation can include vehicle fuel economy and productivity of technicians. But if we really want to talk efficiency, the discussion must focus on routing — specifically, the policies that shape school bus routes and the processes put in place to evaluate those routes.

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