Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Buses travel thousands of miles for students

Every weekday morning, it's common to see flashing red lights reflecting off of a pencil yellow vehicle.

From elementary school to high school, students across the nation rely on buses as their primary mode of transportation each morning and afternoon.

This week, to focus on school bus driver and rider safety, it is National School Bus Safety Week.

Students at Selwyn Elementary and Elizabeth Lane Elementary will learn safety tips from Buster the Talking Bus and Gus the School Bus. The interactive event encourages safety through sight and sound, according to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS).

This year, the CMS student ridership count shows that there is a daily bus ridership of 90,300 this year – 3,000 students more than last year. Each day, CMS buses are traveling more than 105,000 miles to transport students.

Fun facts to know: 
* Nationally, school buses travel about4.3 billion miles per year. With a fatality rate of 0.02 per 100,000,000 passenger miles, school buses are the safest form of ground transportation in the United States.
* In 2012-13, CMS will offer services for 123,000 assigned students to and from school daily, on 953 school buses.
* CMS buses will stop at approximately 24,000 bus stops.
* CMS Transportation will travel approximately 105,663 miles each day within 546 square miles in Mecklenburg County.
* CMS has the largest public school transportation operation in the North Carolina.
* CMS Transportation is ranked the 16th largest student transportation operations in the nation.
* School buses must stop at all railroad crossings and they cannot turn right on red.
* The maximum speed limit for yellow school buses is 45 mph, or in accordance with the posted speed limit.
Source: Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools spokeswoman.