Texaswatch.org, a non-partisan citizen advocacy organization, recently released a report noting that the Texas school bus accident data does not currently add up. Texas state law requires that all school districts submit comprehensive school bus crash data to the state’s Education agency at the end of every school year. If your child was injured in a school bus accident, contact an experienced San Antonio bus accident attorney to learn more about your legal options.
Deadly School Bus Crash in Houston Prompted Concern
In September of this year, there was a tragic school bus accident in Houston which killed two students and injured three others. The accident occurred when a bus from the Houston Independent School District flew off the side of an overpass on the 610 highway. Following the devastating school bus accident, many journalists and non-profit groups like Texas Watch attempted to gather more information about school bus safety in the state. But, according to Texas Watch, it quickly became clear that the state’s reported school bus accident numbers did not make sense. The state’s mandated school bus accident data collection has clear holes which must be remedied.
Lack of School Bus Seat belts are also a Major Concern
The data from all the safety testing done over the last few decades is very clear, seatbelts make school buses more safe. The Texas state legislature realized this, and in 2007, the state passed a regulation promoting increased seatbelt access in school buses. Unfortunately, it is now clear that the law was likely to weak, and had too many loopholes, to make a significant impact. The 2007 law mandates that all future school buses purchases, must be of school buses that are fully equipped with three point seat belts. A three point seat belt is much safer than the usually flimsy seat belts on many current school buses. The goal of the law was to slowly push the school bus three point seat belt coverage. But, the process is going much more slowly that even the state legislature would have expected. There is a loophole in the law that states that the three point seat belt purchase requirement only exists if the state is able to provide funding. This was originally a thirty one million dollar project and so far only about four hundred thousand dollars have actually been spent upgrading school bus seat belts. In fact, some districts, like Houston Independent, did not even bother applying for the funding.
Contact An Experienced San Antonio Bus Accident Attorney
There is nothing more important than the safety of your children. It is our responsibility as a state, and as a country, to make sure that our children can safely get to school. It is very disappointing to see Texas, struggle with school bus safety initiatives. At the Law Offices of Ronald A. Ramos we deep experience in all types of automobile accidents, including bus accidents. We are fully committed to seeking justice for injured victims. If your child was injured in a school bus accident, please contact an experienced Texas bus accident attorney today.