School bus transportation presents unique challenges when planning for safety and emergency preparedness. In some cases entire schools or whole communities need to be relocated. Whether filled with students or evacuees from a disaster, school districts should provide training to school bus drivers so that they are properly prepared to respond to any critical event! School buses should be outfitted with proper emergency response supplies and Minimum National Standard First Aid Kits.
SCHOOL BUS EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS AND SAFETY PLANNING TIPS
All school bus fleet administrators should establish procedures in their respective fleets for handling emergencies such as collisions, riots, strikes, sabotage, natural phenomena, and clinical contamination of a school or the need to evacuate a school or community building for any reason.
Cooperation and coordination of emergency response efforts among local agencies (police, fire, civil defense) and other community resources should be established.
School districts should identify which disasters are most likely to occur in their communities and plan ahead to appropriately respond.
Phone trees with the appropriate lines of cooperating authority and current contact info should be established and shared among the respective agencies.
Procedures should be defined for the event that land telephone lines are inoperable.
Reasonable and accurate estimates should be made of available personnel resources and equipment and the time required responding to a variety of critical events.
Procedures should be established to provide for the transportation needs of mentally and physically challenged in emergency situations.
Communication and training of emergency preparedness and safety procedures and policies is critical. Everyone involved must buy in to the need to be prepared.
Review policies regularly! Community wide weekend emergency response practice drills are a great way to get everyone involved.
Click here for The National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services Emergency and Rescue Procedures Manual. This manual was developed to be used as a guide by school districts or states in preparing an emergency plan.
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