Transportation » School Bus Safety

School Bus Safety

Ensuring school bus safety is of utmost importance. Students, parents, teachers, administrators, transportation staff, and drivers all have crucial roles to play in safeguarding our children when they are near or boarding the school bus.
The most dangerous place for bus passengers is the 12-foot area around the outside of the bus.

We call this the "Danger Zone" because this is where the school bus driver may not be able to see passengers.

Remember and Apply These Rules:

  •  Always wait for the driver's OK before crossing the street.
  •  Always cross the street in front of the bus - at least 10 feet in front of the bus. This is so that the driver can see you.
  •  Never crawl underneath a school bus. If you drop something, tell the driver, and he or she will tell you what to do.

Safety Tips for Parents and Students

Please take a moment to review the following safety tips to help ensure our children arrive to and from school safely each day:

  • Get to the school bus stop five minutes early so you won't have to run across the road to catch the bus.
  • When waiting for the bus, stay away from traffic. Line up at least five giant steps away from the curb or the roadway to wait for the bus.
  • Never run after the school bus if it has already left the bus stop.
  • Never push when getting on or off of the school bus.
  • Always walk at least 10 feet in front of the bus when crossing so that the school bus driver can see you.
  • Be aware - Cross with Care! Wait until the school bus has stopped all traffic before stepping out onto the road.
  • When the school bus is moving, always stay in your seat. Never put your head, arms or hands out of the window.
  • Talk quietly; do not distract your school bus driver.
  • If your school bus crosses railroad tracks, be calm and quiet so that your driver can listen for a train. Always obey your school bus driver's instructions, so that he or she can make safe decisions.
  • Never play with the emergency exits. Backpacks, band instruments, or sports equipment may not block the aisle or emergency exits. If there is an emergency, listen to the driver and follow instructions.
  • When getting off of the school bus, make sure that all drawstrings and other loose objects are secure so that they don't get caught on the handrail or the door.
  • Never cross the street behind the school bus.
  • If you leave something on the bus or drop something outside of the bus, never go back for it. The driver may not see you and begin moving the bus.
  • Never speak to strangers at the bus stop and never get into the car with a stranger.

PennDOT is pleased to provide a school bus activity booklet (PDF) geared toward elementary students.