Back to school

Editorial

Wednesday, September 11 2019

Anyone, of any age, who rode on school buses probably wondered why aren’t there seat belts on the school bus. Even once it became legally required to wear seat belts in every other vehicle that carries children, school buses didn’t have belts.

So it comes as no surprise that finally, such things are being installed on the big orange buses that carry our most precious cargo to and from their education destinations. 

But those buses can only protect children once they are on board. It’s up to the rest of the drivers, on Gabriola and elsewhere, to keep the children safe when getting on and off the bus.

Coming to a complete stop when the bus has red lights flashing and the stop sign out is a good start.

Waiting until the bus has completely pulled away from dropping off the children to see if any are  still going to cross - that’s another.

Doing 30kph in the school zone - that helps the bus kids and the ones walking to school.

Children are easily distracted. They’re still absorbing things like the fact that the line on the side of the roadway is white.

Not green. Not purple. White. 

Even without asking why, the fact that the line is white is worth a ten minute ponder while they walk along the road. They’re also trying to store away a question (or ten) to ask their parents/teachers/random strangers they might pass about said white line.

So they’re not always aware of the giant metal death machines lumbering by inches from their pondering minds.

It’s a repeat message, and one that will likely get repeated into the next year. But please, especially during these first couple weeks as students are forming their new school habits, please slow down - and stop for the bus.