INDIANAPOLIS — The state Senate unanimously passed a school bus safety bill on Monday that was spurred by the October crash that killed three students.
As SBF previously reported, Senate Bill 2 addresses a number of school bus safety concerns, such as same-side pickups on state highways; allowing school districts to petition to have speed limits reduced near bus stops; and increased penalties for traffic law violations resulting in death.
Sen. Randy Head introduced the legislation in response to two fatal school bus crashes in his district, including the fatal crash in Rochester, Indiana, which killed three students and seriously injured one other. The bus’s stop arm was deployed with its lights flashing; however, the motorist reportedly told investigators that she didn’t see the bus or the students until it was too late to stop.
The parents of the three students who were killed in the crash, Brittany and Shane Ingle, released a statement, according to FOX 59, thanking Sen. Head and the state Senate for approving the school bus safety bill.
“Shane and I are extremely happy [and] excited that the Senate has voted to move this legislation forward to the House for final vote,” Brittany Ingle said. “We wish to thank Sen. Head and the entire Indiana Senate for passing this important piece of legislation, and want to thank everyone that has been so supportive of our efforts to bring meaningful new legislation to improve school bus safety for all children in Indiana, and naming this piece of legislation in memory of our children, ‘Maxstrong.’”
The Ingles added in the statement that they will continue to encourage the community to make their voices heard, and that they will use their Maxstrong Foundation, an organization created in honor of their children, to help pass legislation that would improve school bus safety.
Senate Bill 2 has now been referred to the House of Representatives, according to the state's general assembly website.