School Bus Fleet

August 2014

A management & maintenance magazine for school transportation fleets

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19 A U G U S T 2 0 1 4 • S C H O O L B U S F L E E T "Some committees are structured as a punitive board," she explains. "There are other venues [that] take care of the punitive aspects of an acci- dent. The review committee needs to fll a different space." Fairness is another crucial factor, she adds. "I have been involved in ac- cident review committees where the organizations were not holding them- selves accountable for their potential contribution to the issues leading up to the accident. If we are to hold driv- ers accountable, management must be accountable as well." Most importantly, Furneaux says, post-accident reviews should be fo- tion supervisor, feet service manager, an offce staff member and two tech- nicians, which he says works well. He does not include bus drivers in the team, because he doesn't think they should be placed in a position to judge their peers. "[Most] bus drivers are good at what they do, but that doesn't qualify them to sit in judgment over other [driv- ers]," Hennerley says. "The challenge is to be impartial, zero in on what hap- pened, because you can't have a solu- tion until you fnd the problem." Kathleen Furneaux, executive di- rector of the Pupil Transportation Safety Institute, agrees. Dallessandro, a school transporta- tion consultant and human resourc- es manager for Rural/Metro Medi- cal Services in Buffalo, New York, and former transportation super- visor at Lake Shore Central School District in Angola, New York. With- out it, directors may miss gathering valuable data. Participants should be clearly iden- tifed, and a response checklist should be developed, covering what data, such as accident photos, the copy of the drug test, and police and insurance reports, to gather after an accident. "If you have all that mapped out up front, your committee will be very productive going forward," Dalles- sandro says. Selecting committee members To get a well-rounded perspective, many committees include a union representative; an employee from the business offce or safety risk depart- ment; a superintendent or assistant superintendent; a local government representative; fre chief or a police department representative and an in- surance company representative. Although bringing a variety of per- spectives and expertise to the table is benefcial, committee or group mem- bers have to make a point to work to- gether to overcome the barriers from that expertise, come to some common ground and reach a workable solution. Dallessandro says that sometimes members only look at the accident from the perspective of their back- ground. For instance, he explains, an insurance representative may only re- view the scenario from the standpoint of risk and preventing loss, and how it will impact insurance coverage, while a transportation director may mainly focus on route changes. The biggest challenge, says Edd Hennerley, director of transportation at Queen Creek (Ariz.) Unifed School District #95, is selecting the right peo- ple to conduct the investigations and the follow-up. Hennerley formed a response team that includes the district's transporta- Post-accident checklist tips: A good resource for putting a response checklist together is the National Safety Council, which covers different types of accidents and what factors committees should review in determining preventability, says Steve Vales, supervisor of transportation at St. John the Baptist Parish Public Schools in Reserve, Louisiana. http://www.nsc.org/news_resources/Resources/Pages/ SafetyHealthFactSheets.aspx Make sure your committee has these documents to review: a preliminary ac- cident report from the driver, a copy of the police report, witness statements, an estimate for vehicle repairs and photos of the scene. Edd Hennerley, director of transportation at Queen Creek (Ariz.) Unifed School District #95, says that he keeps a digital camera always charged and at the ready for when he needs to go to the scene of an accident. Edd Hennerley, director of transportation at Queen Creek (Ariz.) Unifed School District #95 (shown center), formed a post-accident response team that includes the feet service man- ager, Chanie Passerby (shown left), transportation supervisor, Marcia Stones (shown right), an offce staff member and two technicians. 1 2 3

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