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School Buses (Safety)

Volume 979: debated on Tuesday 19 February 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what guidance is issued to local authorities concerning the safety of children on school buses.

There are two sections dealing with this subject in the Department's booklet "Safety at School: General Advice", number 6 in the DES safety series. The second edition of this booklet was published earlier this month. A copy was placed in the Library. The section, on page 34, which deals with pupils generally and is headed "The journey to school" draws attention to a number of potential hazards associated with travel on buses. It concludes:

"Pupils using buses should be reminded of the hazards of misusing automatic entry doors, tampering with emergency doors and getting on or off moving buses".

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he is satisfied that there are adequate precautions taken by local authorities to ensure the safety of children traveling on school buses; and if he will make a statement.

The prevention of accidents requires constant vigilance on the part of all concerned. While it will never be possible to be entirely satisfied that all possible precautions are taken, I have no doubt that local education authorities are aware of the dangers and take steps to minimise them.