PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — School buses usually aren’t hard to miss, but lately a couple have been involved in serious crashes.
Bay District School officials are asking drivers to be more careful around buses during their normal routes.
They’re also giving drivers some good safety precautions.
In the last two weeks, two Bay District School buses have been struck while making their rounds.
On Monday, four students were transported to a local hospital for minor injuries after their bus was struck by a semi-truck.
“I don’t know what else you could have done,” Transportation Director Bay District Schools Michael Carter said. “We’re sitting there with flashers on, so, you know, what do you do in those circumstances? So in both of those cases, absolutely nothing, no safety protocol, nothing we could have done differently to have prevented those.”
Last Tuesday, a man was killed after he collided with a school bus on U.S. 231.
Carter said it’s crucial to pay attention to buses flashing lights.
“When you see those amber lights go ahead and stop, let’s make it safe for the student and then, of course, when the red lights flash in almost every circumstance, you can assume that you’re supposed to stop. If it’s a two-lane road, there’s a lot of rules that are involved but as long as you stop, you’re fine,” Carter said.
Bay District Schools Superintendent Bill Husfelt said distracted driving could play a role.
“I think everyone’s guilty at one time or another of having distracted driving problems, and it’s just not worth the risk and I just want to caution everyone to be careful,” Husfelt said. “I see these terrible accidents and hear about these terrible tragedies or near tragedies and we just want people to be careful. They have jobs to do and they’re going to make a lot of stops, sudden stops and just watch out for them because they’ve got our most prized possession and that’s our children.”
For more school bus safety tips and rules visit flhsmv.gov/safety-center/child-safety.