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Accident highlights need for school bus safety instruction

The tragic school bus accident in Texas this week is a stark reminder to parents and students in San Diego that it is critically important to know how to stay safe when riding a school bus.

The recent accident resulted in the death of two students. In addition, two other students and the bus driver were taken to the hospital after suffering severe injuries in the crash. The collision reportedly occurred when another driver swerved toward the bus. The bus driver, attempting to avoid the vehicle, crashed into the guardrail causing the bus to fall over onto the underpass.

The accident is still being investigated.

For those of us in California, it is a reminder to make sure our children know what they can do to be as safe as possible when riding a bus. When so many things are out of our control - such as the behavior of other drivers - it is important to be mindful of the ways we can take action to protect ourselves.

If they are riding in a school bus with seat belts installed, for instance, children should be instructed to always wear the safety restraint. Particularly in high speed crashes on the highway, wearing a seat belt could be a life-saving decision.

Of course, common sense dictates that children should always stay seated when on a school bus. In addition, they should not engage in activities that could distract the bus driver, as even a momentary distraction could be enough to result in a serious collision.

Despite the recent accident, school buses are considered safer than cars and SUVs, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Nevertheless, it can never hurt to make sure your kids know how to stay safe when they go to and from school every day.

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