Bus crash shows need for mass casualty event recovery planning

Michael Dorn
Posted on August 18, 2010

The school bus crash in Missouri on Aug. 5 demonstrates the need for campus crisis recovery planning efforts to address mass casualty events. The number of students who were injured, fatalities and the number of students and staff who experienced the event will require significant mental health recovery capabilities.

Mass casualty school bus accidents occurring in the community are difficult, but incidents involving field trips can be even more challenging if the crash occurs in another geographic region. A robust and properly trained recovery team with a detailed written recovery plan is crucial for these types of events.

Regional and state recovery team concepts are especially helpful for these situations as well. There are also a number of emergency preparedness measures for such events, including programming student, staff and chaperone information into the emergency notification system to assist in prompt notification of parents and family members when emergencies occur.

Our thoughts are with the students, staff, family members and school officials faced with this difficult situation.

Michael Dorn serves as the executive director of Safe Havens International, a global nonprofit campus safety center. This article originally appeared on the Website of Campus Safety Magazine, a sister publication of SCHOOL BUS FLEET.


Related Topics: activity/field trips, emergency planning, fatalities, school bus crash

Comments ( 1 )
  • Daniel

     | about 7 years ago

    It also demonstrates the need to use and practice a safe following distance. It also demonstrates the most dangerous seats in a school are in the rear.

More Stories

VIDEO: School Bus Danger Zone Awareness

This dramatization from Georgia, based on a true story, teaches students about safely boarding and exiting the school bus — including what to do if they drop something.

Two bills that are intended to address school bus safety in the wake of a fatal crash in November have advanced in the Tennessee House of Representatives. One would raise the minimum age for new school bus drivers, and the other would require "a restraint system" on school buses.

Tennessee School Bus Bills Advance

A bill that would raise the minimum age for new school bus drivers in the state passes unanimously in the House. Another bill that would require restraints on school buses passes a committee vote.

Planning has begun for the 17th National Congress on School Transportation (NCST) in 2020. Murrell Martin and Bill Loshbough are shown here leading a discussion at NCST 2015.

NCST 2020 Planning Begins

Planning for the 17th National Congress on School Transportation is now in the works, with committee members being re-established and selected through this summer.

Be the First to Know

Get the latest news and most popular articles from SBF delivered straight to your inbox. Stay on top of the school bus industry and don't miss a thing!