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Editor's note — Last month, NHTSA published a final rule that amends FMVSS 111, requiring all vehicles manufactured as of May 1, 2018, and that weigh less than 10,000 pounds GVWR — including some Type A-1 school buses, but excluding motorcyles and trailers — to be equipped with backup cameras. In the process, NHTSA also renamed the safety standard “Rearview Visibility.” We asked our LinkedIn members what they thought the final rule might

mean to the technological and safety evolution of the school bus. It will be a matter of time that it will be added to bigger school

buses. Motorcoaches have them, RVs have them now. Saying that, they should have made the change for all types of school buses. Wait until a student is killed with a big bus when backing up. It will hit the fan then. If it is good for small school buses, why is it not good for all school buses? How many small buses will be out there in 2018? Life for the small bus is 10 years. So, by 2028, each replacement bus will have them. About 17 percent of school bus collisions are from back- ing each year because the driver does not get out of the bus to look before backing. Tey get out after they hit something. More kids are killed each year with SUVs and cars, not small school buses. When was the last time a child was killed by a small school bus that was backing? When are they going to have a better back-up light so you can see better behind you in the dark? Never. I don’t think it should be under FMVSS 111. It is not a mirror. If it could not stand by itself, it is not needed. Do you know only 22 states have back-up alarms on school buses? Does that mean you take them off in those states? Richard Fisher, Trans-Consult Peyton, Colo.

I can foresee the day when the cameras will become a requirement

on not only the rear, but the front, as well for all weight classes of school buses.

Jim Humphreys, Director of Transportation Duncanville (Texas) ISD

Te only drawback I can think of would be the cost of maintaining

them. But then the possible cost reductions from making the vehicle safer may be more than the cost to maintain them. So, (it’s) probably a wash there. I would think this is a good idea. Kyle Stanchfield, Terminal Manager Johnson School Bus Service Fond Du Lac, Wis.


I cannot begin to express my outrage at the stupidity of the thinking involved in this study (“Hours-of-Service Rule Remains Controversial Despite Latest Report on Effectiveness,” Jan. 30) which, despite the validity of its findings, is almost trivial compared to the fact that the major cause of most catastrophic accidents, and the major cause of driver fatigue in general, is shift inversion — which we commonly know as “jet lag.” When the HOS regulations were revised a decade ago, a provision was included to limit the start time of any given shift to no more than three hours earlier or later than the start time of the previous shift. Astonishingly, both the UMA and ABA lobbied intensely for an exemption from this critical provision. Te FMCSA exempted them from the revisions altogether. What this study is talking about may have value, but it is an asterisk to the problem that remains.

Ned Einstein, Trans-Alt New York

10 School Transportation News May 2014

The views and opinions in School Transportation News are those of the editorial staff. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the members of the Editorial Advisory Board or their organizations. Individuals serving on the board are advisors only and are not responsible for the editorial content.


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Denny Coughlin, Consultant; Judith Dupille, Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles; Dick Fischer, Trans-Consult; Ron Love, Delaware DOE; Randy McLerran, National Bus Sales; Pete Meslin, Newport-Mesa Unified; Nancy Netherland, Migrant- Seasonal Head Start; Marshall Casey, Consultant; Alexandra Robinson, NAPT; Launi Schmutz, Washington County


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