Bus Safety Rules
Sec. 34.013. BUS SEAT BELT POLICY. A school district shall require a student riding a bus operated by or contracted for operation by the district to wear a seat belt if the bus is equipped with seat belts for all passengers on the bus. A school district may implement a disciplinary policy to enforce the use of seat belts by students.
Safety Rules for Students
- Get to your stop on time – 5 to 15 minutes early.
- Stand back from the edge of the road or curb because the bus is required to be pulled off the side of the roadway.
- Loading and unloading procedures:
- Stand in line at least five feet back from the bus stop to avoid accidents.
- Permit younger students to board first.
- Watch your step. Step on and off quickly, quietly without crowding, pushing, or shoving.
- Do not play at the bus stop. Watch for traffic at all times.
- Move away from the bus as soon as you get off to avoid falling under the rear wheel of the bus.
- To cross a roadway:
- If the driver instructs you to cross without his/her escorting you, move at least 10 feet in front of the bus on the shoulder or curb and wait for the driver to signal you across.
- If the driver signifies or instructs you that he/she will escort you across the roadway, then he/she will get off the bus first and escort you across the road or street.
- Be seated before the bus begins to move. Remain seated until it stops.
- Keep your hands, arms, elbow, or anything else out of the window.
- Never put anything in the aisles.
- Band instruments too large to be held in your lap or placed under the seat may not be transported on the bus.
- Live animals, insects, or dangerous objects of any nature; may not be brought on buses by anyone. Cold drink bottles or cans are not permitted on buses.
- Use of tobacco in any form is prohibited while riding the bus.
- Damage to the interior of the bus by students must be paid for by the student or students causing the damage.
- NO eating on buses;. NO EXCEPTIONS! Never throw objects of any kind from buses.
- To prevent overcrowding of buses, please do not invite large groups of friends to ride home with you.
- Only students enrolled at Wharton ISD are permitted to ride buses.
- Follow any other instructions given to you by the bus driver and/or sponsor.
- Never use the rear emergency door to enter or exit the bus except in an emergency.
- Rocking the bus is not allowed.
- Gang sign usage is not allowed
- Threats to driver/rider & members of their family could result in severe punishment.
Driver Safety Policies:
- Inspect all safety equipment monthly and report an incident of non-function or malfunction.
- Report discipline problems to the appropriate building principal by sending a discipline notice via transportation department.
- Report an accident to the proper authority. Each driver will remain at the scene of an accident that they are involved in until the proper authorities are present to investigate the accident.
- Unless a permission note signed by the student’s parent requesting a non-scheduled stop is received, discharge pupilsonly at approved unloading areas.
- A pre-trip inspection report will be completed before each route. Reports are to be kept in a binder on the bus and available for inspection daily.
Loading and Unloading Procedures:
- Proper signaling: the approved signaling procedures should be followed which include the use of directional signals, caution signals, and flashing signals.
- DO NOT open the door of the bus until you are sure that traffic has stopped both directions when discharging students.
- Where pupils must cross a road after getting off the bus:
- The driver shall take position on line with the left front fender of the bus and about 10 feet in front of the bus.
- Look both ways to be sure that traffic has stopped and that no traffic is approaching.
- The driver should then signal his/her children to cross the road.
- The bus operator is responsible for getting the students across the roadway safely.
- This responsibility must not be placed in the hands of student assistants at any time.
- As soon as a bus operator is sure that all are clear of the bus, and are safely off the road, close the door immediately. This will signal that waiting motorist may pass.
- DO NOT signal a motorist to pass
Speed and Traffic Control
- Buses shall not be operated at speeds in excess of 50 miles per hour for day and night operation.
- Buses shall travel at speeds not to exceed 20 miles per hour on any school campus or across streets.
- Bus operators, who unload students along streets or highways over which other buses in the fleet travel, are to give clearance to the through buses as they approach. Such buses keep their doors shut at their first stop and permit through buses to pass. You should extend this courtesy to your fellow bus operators.
- Bus operators should observe 300-foot spacing between buses, which will enable passing traffic proper notification. This is very important in travel to and from football games or any time when more than one bus is traveling in a convoy.
- Buses shall not be driven backwards on any of your school loading zones except where backing up is absolutely necessary. If a bus must back up on a school campus or loading zone, the driver should make sure the way is clear prior to backing by having some reliable person present to serve as flag person.