NTSB: All New School Buses Need to Be Fitted With Seat Belts

For the first time, the National Transportation Safety Board is recommending that all new school buses in the U.S. be fitted with full seat belts, following two deadly 2016 crashes. Although recommendations for seat belts have been made periodically over the years, there has been uncertainty about the actual benefit of seat belts due to evacuation concerns. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says on its website that seat belts are not absolutely necessary in large school buses, although they are required for small school buses due to the size and the weight of the vehicle. The NTSB also recommended that “all new school buses to be equipped with collision avoidance systems and automatic emergency braking technologies” as well. Last week, a New Jersey fifth-grader and her teacher were killed, and 43 others injured, in a collision involving their school bus and a dump truck.