Zonar's downloadable guide provides motorists with information on how to drive safely around school buses. File photo

Zonar's downloadable guide provides motorists with information on how to drive safely around school buses. File photo

SEATTLE — With summer almost over, smart fleet management technology supplier Zonar has created a back-to-school guide to provide motorists with tips on how to drive safely around school buses.

According to the American School Bus Council, school buses are the safest mode of transportation for students. However, since 2007, there has been an increase of injuries to school bus drivers by nearly 33% while on the job.

Analyzing injury and accident data over the past 10 years, Zonar also found that:

  • 87% of accidents involving a school bus were caused by another vehicle; 40% involved a vehicle rear-ending a stopped or slowing school bus, and 20% involved a driver T-boning the bus at an intersection.
  • Accidents involving school buses take place most frequently at the beginning (September) and at the end (June) of the school year.
  • On average, most school bus accidents caused by speeding occur in May and November (more than a third of accidents during these months involve one vehicle going over the speed limit).

"During the school year, school bus drivers ensure their passengers reach their destinations safely and on time," said H. Kevin Mest, senior vice president of passenger services at Zonar. "Not only should we recognize the men and women who play such a crucial role in our children's lives, the general public driving near school buses should also take on the responsibility for helping them stay safe and making sure we aren’t inadvertently causing accidents or injuries."

The guide for motorists includes tips such as: driving no more than 25 mph near school buses or bus stops, maintaining about a three-second distance away from a bus, and never passing a stopped bus on an undivided road.

Download the full guide here.

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