School Bus Fleet

July 2014

A management & maintenance magazine for school transportation fleets

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industry news 8 S C H O O L B U S F L E E T • J U L Y 2 0 1 4 District boosts training with bus crash drill (BY KELLY AGUINALDO) PERTH AMBOY, N.J. — Perth Amboy Public Schools' transportation team held a full-scale bus accident drill with several city departments with the aim of better preparing everyone involved in the event of an actual emergency. The drill, which was held at one of the district's elementary schools on April 16, was nine months in the mak- ing, and approximately 100 people participated. This included the pupil transportation staff, the district's se- curity team, a camera crew, fre and police department personnel, an EMS team and students. Perth Amboy Public Schools Trans- portation Manager Edmund Tread- away told SBF that the drill simulated a school bus full of students being hit by a drunken driver. Eighteen students from a local performing arts school pretended to sustain injuries ranging from broken arms to head wounds. "We wanted the kids to realize that in a real emergency, you can't lose your head — you have to stay calm," Treadaway said. The fre department cut open the bus (which had been retired from ser- vice) and evacuated students, putting some on stretchers to be transported to Raritan Bay Medical Center. Tread- away said students were transported to the medical center in order to test the staff's ability to handle a large group of patients in an emergency. "In the city, we don't have enough ambulances to take that many stu- dents to a hospital, so the county has an ambulance bus that can hold 14 to 20 stretchers, so they brought that in to get the kids to the hospital. It would be used in an actual crash," Treadaway explained. The entire drill was flmed by the district's cable station staff, and a cam- era crew was also flming the triage at the medical center. The video will be used for training purposes, with copies going to Perth Amboy Public Schools' transportation department, the city's police and fre departments, the emergency response team and the medical center staff. Treadaway said that the emergency responders made one mistake during the drill: They miscounted the number of students on the bus. "That's a big issue, so they realized that they have to be more diligent," he said, but he also noted that overall, they now feel better prepared to han- dle this type of accident. The fre department team found the drill especially helpful, Treadaway added, because many on the team had never been given an opportunity to cut open a bus, so they didn't have previ- ous knowledge of the structural integ- rity of a school bus. In a drill at Perth Amboy Public Schools, an accident was simulated in which a drunken driver struck a school bus full of students. Photo courtesy Edmund Treadaway Jr. HOOVER, Ala. — Hoover City Schools' plan to charge fees for student transportation is now targeted for 2015-16. Superintendent Andy Craig announced the change in a let- ter on May 6. The Hoover board of education had voted in April to implement the bus fees for the 2014-15 school year. District offcials said they will continue to work with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Alabama State Department of Education to plan and design the "cost-sharing transportation model." The district's plan outlines a school bus fee structure that ranges from $0.43 to $2.26 per student per day, depend- ing on how many student riders a family has and whether they qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. "This fee structure will serve as a planning guide as we work to transition to a more effective, effcient and fnancially sustainable student transportation model," Craig wrote. "We envision Hoover City Schools pro- viding world-class pupil transportation services using a cost-sharing model whereby state earmarked transportation funds are combined with local tax receipts and equitably ad- ministered ridership charges for students choosing to ride." Craig noted that the new transportation model might allow the district to integrate more technology to enhance safety and effciency. There could also be increased potential to implement "enhanced supervision" on school buses, the superintendent added. Hoover City Schools currently transports about 6,266 reg- ular-route riders daily. More online To see more photos of the Perth Amboy bus crash drill, go to and click "Photo Gallery." School bus fee plan delayed by 1 year BY THOMAS MCMAHON

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