Bus Seat Belts

District 833 leads the way in school bus safety
Posted on 08/27/2019
School BusesWhen District 833 students return to school this fall, they’ll notice changes on some of their school buses. Over the summer, the district purchased 10 new buses with shoulder seat belts to replace older buses. The change makes the district one of the first in Minnesota to start the process of adding seat belts to all school buses.

“We strongly believe seatbelts will increase student safety in accidents, decrease bus driver distractions and create more structure to a sometimes chaotic environment,” said Andy Smith, Assistant Director for Transportation Operations. “This will help the driver focus on driving and not a student jumping seats, sitting in the aisle or otherwise misbehaving.”

District 833 is currently planning to purchase 8-10 buses with seat belts each year until all 109 buses used for general education routes are replaced. The process is currently scheduled to take 10-12 years.

In the meantime, families can be assured that our buses are still very safe, with drivers who take the utmost care of our students.

“We’re extremely proud to be one of the first school districts to voluntarily use lap or shoulder belts in our buses in the state,” Smith continued. “I know of a few districts that have ordered one or two as a pilot type program.”

Before the 2019-20 school year, District 833 had only equipped special education school buses with seat belts. Those buses offer lap seat belts, in addition to built-in car seats for preschool students.