A demonstration by Daimler Trucks North America of how automated commercial trucks, including school buses, could one day communicate with drivers who are behind the wheel but who would no longer need to keep their hands on it, or their eyes on the road.

driverless truck for testing. At about the same time, Tomas un- veiled its BusWise technology that provides drivers with 360-de- gree views around the school bus “Danger Zone,” along with student tracking and a range of vehicle telematics. Te special session will discuss the driver assist technology that’s

already on school buses and how those solutions fit in with innova- tions available on late-model passenger vehicles. Te event will also likely encourage attendees to ask questions, namely of school bus manufacturers on what they can do, together, to adapt lane depar- ture warning systems, automatic braking, collision avoidance, blind spot detectors and even drowsy-driver indicators to school buses. Te event will certainly be discussed during the NAPT’s inau-

gural Tuesday evening at the New Ideas Exchange to be held at the conclusion of the conference on Nov. 7, as well as during the NAPT Summit Trade Show the day prior. Blue Bird also sponsors NAPT keynote Roger Crawford, a Hall

of Fame tennis player whom Sports Illustrated called “one of the most accomplished physically challenged athletes in the world.” Meanwhile, this year’s NASDPTS conference will highlight the polarizing topic of lap-shoulder seat belts in school buses with the opening session on Nov. 5. Te roundtable, which will include NASDPTS President Diana Hollander, retired NASDPTS Executive Director Charles Gauthier and a concussion and crash forces expert from National Transportation Safety Board, is scheduled to discuss the history and evolution of three-point, lap-shoulder belts on school buses as well as provide the perspective of injuries suffered during crashes. Specifically, the session would examine a crash involving a Louisiana athletic team that did not use the three-point belts, while also providing a forum led by industry and seat-belt experts. Te conference will also share a report on an American School

Bus Council school bus ridership study, said Michael LaRocco, the association’s president-elect and state director of transportation for the Indiana Department of Education. Meanwhile, he added that NHTSA, FMCSA, NTSB and the U.S. Department of Education were invited to report on issues the

64 School Transportation News • OCTOBER 2017

agencies are undertaking regarding school transportation. Topics are expected to include Entry Level Driver Training, sleep apnea regulation withdrawal and an update on what information can cur- rently be shared about last November’s fatal crashes in Baltimore and Chattanooga. NASDPTS will also feature discussions on mobile data termi- nals, or tablets, as well as the annual stop arm survey that will be co-presented alongside NAPT. LaRocco said Linda F. Bluth, Ed.D. is speaking at NASDPTS

this year and will discuss the impact of school reform on student transportation related to the Individuals with Disabilities Educa- tion Act, the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Act, school choice and charter schools. Tis will also include a panel discussion of several state directors. Additionally, several meetings will allow NASDPTS members updated information on the activities of the Supplier Council, the State and National Association Council (SNAC), the National Congress on School Transportation (NCST), and School Bus Manufacturer’s Technical Council (SBMTC). Tis will be topped off by various networking events being offered by vendors during the evening after each day’s activities. 

More information on next month’s conferences can be found at and

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