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School bus crashes drop 10% in Calif.
October 4, 2011
Even with increases in the state’s number of school buses and miles traveled, collisions fell from 2,091 to 1,878 in fiscal year 2009-10. Five of the crashes resulted in fatalities, but none was a student bus passenger.
Student, bus driver cited for endangerment
October 4, 2011
A 15-year-old girl on a Tennessee school bus allegedly stands up and grabs the steering wheel from the driver, who students claimed was missing stops. The driver maintains control of the bus and turns back to a high school to report the incident, but she acknowledges that she ignored stop signs in the return trip.
Rotary unveils updated 'green' inground lift
October 4, 2011
Rotary Lift introduces its updated MOD30 environmentally friendly inground lift at the American Public Transportation Association EXPO 2011. The lift includes an ultra-low-profile version of the company's patented universal saddle adapter, and both of the lift's saddle adapters offer a greater adjustment range.
4 buses burn at Ill. elementary school
October 4, 2011
Sheriff's deputies and fire personnel respond to a report of buses on fire and find four school buses aflame in the school's parking lot. Officials are considering the fire suspicious in nature but are not labeling it arson.
Alan Fidler of Indiana (center) received a plaque for placing first in the technician category.
Winners named in ‘America’s Best’ tech, inspector contest
October 3, 2011
Alan Fidler of Indiana places first in the technician category and Jack Defibaugh of West Virginia takes the top honor in the inspector category. Fidler, Defibaugh and the other competitors were scored on a written exam and multiple hands-on components.
Tags: NAPT
Bus driver recommends student for sports wheelchair
October 3, 2011
Jordan Avis receives the new wheelchair from a foundation that raises money to benefit special-needs students during an assembly at his high school. Avis' school bus driver alerted the foundation that Avis' regular wheelchair, which he was using while playing basketball, was falling apart.
Following fatal accidents, Neb. motorists urged to use caution around buses
October 3, 2011
Last month, two men were killed in separate incidents wherein the vehicles they were driving struck the rear of stopped school buses. The Nebraska State Patrol issues a statement urging all drivers to “pay extra attention during those times when school buses are typically on the road.”
2 more pupil transporters complete NAPT special-needs training
September 30, 2011
Michele Drorbaugh of Seattle Public Schools and Jeffrey A. Finfrock of Student Transportation of America’s terminal in Carnegie, Pa., are the 10th and 11th people, respectively, to complete the association’s Special Needs Transportation Training Program. The program provides transportation personnel serving students with disabilities with access to educational opportunities at both local and national conferences.
Ore. district enhances service, cuts crashes by 25%
September 29, 2011
Over the past year, Salem-Keizer Public Schools significantly reduced its accident rate, improved processing time for special-needs passengers and developed new bell times. Transportation department members also received some key honors from the Oregon Pupil Transportation Association.
N.J. extends service life of certain buses to 15 years
September 29, 2011
Under legislation that was recently signed into law, school buses manufactured on or after Jan. 1, 2007, and school buses manufactured prior to Jan. 1, 2007, that have been installed with closed crankcase technology can remain in service for 15 years, which is up from 12 years. The law does not apply to transit-style school buses whose gross vehicle weight exceeds 25,000 pounds and Type S school buses.
Ky. district staff honored for dedication to student safety
September 29, 2011
The Kentucky Association for Pupil Transportation names John Odom, Warren County Public Schools’ director of transportation, Director of the Year at its annual recognition dinner. Mary McGrew is named the state's Driver of the Year, and Dickie Sadler is recognized as Special Needs Driver of the Year.
Tags: Kentucky
NAPT awards over a dozen scholarships
September 29, 2011
The scholarships cover the cost of registration to attend the 2011 Annual NAPT Summit, which will be held in Cincinnati next month. The funding for nine of the scholarships was provided by Zonar Systems. The funding for four of the scholarships was provided by Peter Lawrence, director of transportation for the Fairport (N.Y.) Central School District, and his wife, Linda.
During their annual gathering next month, state pupil transportation directors will hear from former Utah Jazz player Mark Eaton, who recorded a PSA promoting the yellow school bus.
Former NBA star to speak at NASDPTS conference
September 29, 2011
During their annual gathering next month, state pupil transportation directors will hear a keynote address from former Utah Jazz player Mark Eaton, who recently recorded a PSA promoting the yellow school bus. Also on the conference lineup are high-profile feds, including NHTSA Administrator David Strickland and NTSB Chairman Deborah Hersman.
A-Z Bus Sales promotes top exec
September 28, 2011
Jim Reynolds, who has served as president since 2006, is now president and CEO. In his new role, Reynolds will continue to direct the business activities of A-Z Bus Sales, and he will add the responsibilities of strategic planning, corporate succession planning, and mergers and acquisitions.
Police conducting thousands of surprise bus inspections
September 27, 2011
The two-week strike force targets motorcoaches, tour buses, school buses and other passenger vehicles across the country. It is launched on the same day as the federal government’s Motorcoach Safety Summit.
Former bus driver honored for preventing possible child abduction
September 27, 2011
Kandi Burnham is honored at Florida's annual Missing Children's Day for her actions. In December, Burnham became suspicious of a man who approached her bus pushing a wheelchair and asked for one of the students on board her bus. The man claimed to be the student's father, then her uncle. Burnham drove off and reported the incident.
Thomas Built Buses engineers review an array of recently installed upgrades on a prototype of the EFX.
Thomas Built boosts storage, access in redesigned Type D bus
September 27, 2011
The school bus manufacturer says that the Saf-T-Liner EFX’s redesigned exterior allows easier access to electrical components, while increased cockpit storage makes it more comfortable and convenient for drivers. President and CEO Kelley Platt and Product Planning Manager Jed Routh discuss the new bus in an interview with SBF.
Suicidal man sentenced for crashing into bus
September 27, 2011
Joseph Anthony Garcia pleads guilty to eight counts of assault with a deadly weapon and is sentenced to two years in prison on each count for ramming his car into a California school district's bus last year. Moments before the crash, Garcia failed in an apparent attempt to leap to his death by climbing a highway overpass.
Blue Bird donates $7K to education center
September 27, 2011
The school bus manufacturer presents a $7,396 check to be used for Kay Center athletes’ travel expenses as they compete in the Special Olympics. The Kay Center provides work programs for adults with developmental disabilities, and about 60 percent of the center’s programs revolve around Blue Bird outsourced job functions.
Safe Havens International will soon release a set of videos on crisis preparedness for the school bus environment. This is a still shot from a video about a student reporting a weapon on the bus.Photo by Rachel Wilson, Safe Havens International.
Videos to instruct on school bus crisis response
September 26, 2011
The set of DVDs from Safe Havens International will cover such topics as why video tabletops and mental simulation exercises are effective at improving employees’ performance under life-and-death conditions. The organization has been using the scenarios in the videos for training purposes at school districts and to evaluate their level of preparedness. Safe Havens Executive Director Michael Dorn discusses the findings with SBF.

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