ERIC Number: ED284346
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1986-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Seat Belts in School Buses: A Technical Analysis of the Literature.
Splaine, Pam; Frankel, Steven M.
This report, prepared for the Montgomery County (Maryland) Public Schools superintendent and board members, identifies the questions concerning seat belt use in school buses, examines relevant literature, and draws some conclusions. According to the literature, seat belts are one of many alternative and interdependent safety devices built into buses. Consequently, this report addresses three specific issues: (1) seat belts in new buses, (2) seat belts compared to other safety features, and (3) retrofitting existing buses with seat belts. Regarding the first issue, information falls into three categories: (1) active research (crash simulation studies), (2) investigations (examination of real accident statistics), and (3) discussions by local and state agencies. The studies and testimony provide inconclusive evidence regarding safety benefits and problems of equipping school buses with seat belts. Installing seat belts on new buses or buying seat-belt-equipped buses are the best options. Many newer features mandatory since 1977 (additional riveting, strengthened roofs, shatter-proof windows, and compartmentalization) have greater potential than seat belts for preventing accident injuries. Concerning the third issue, results show that prestandard buses should not be fitted with seat belts. This report recommends replacing all 230 of Montgomery County Schools' older buses immediately. One exhibit showing an analysis of costs over a 30-month period is included. (MLH)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Policymakers
Authoring Institution: Montgomery County Public Schools, Rockville, MD. Dept. of Educational Accountability.