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The school year begins with several bus crashes

With the summer gone, the 100 deadliest driving days of the year are over. However, Missouri drivers should not rest easy yet. The beginning of the school year brings a whole new slew of hazards that many motorists must adjust to.

Besides the increase in traffic, school buses are now back in business. They are slower and more awkward for motorists to get around especially in areas where the bus needs to stop to pick up or drop off children. Though parents usually feel comfortable having their kid take the bus to school as it is a more convenient and safer option, some are becoming more hesitant thanks to the amount of serious bus accidents that have occurred in Missouri within only a few weeks of classes.

First day scares

In mid-August, a class of 30 students at Fort Zumwalt had their bus crash into a ditch after it slipped on a rain covered road in O'Fallon on their first day of school. Two middle school students and the driver were taken into the hospital for their injuries. The road they were on was narrow and in a rural area in a privately-owned land which the county has no control of. The school district is looking to possibly invest in smaller buses to avoid accidents on those streets again.

Teen endangerment

Teenagers who receive their licenses over the summer are now adjusting to driving to school every morning, but most are not used to buses roaming the streets yet. If you want proof, look no further than September 5, where a teenage driver in Crane drove too fast and crashed head-on into a school bus with 8 students. While the driver and students were not harmed, the driver had to be airlifted by emergency crews.

A deadly outcome

The teenager's crash was not the only bus accident Crane experienced in the last few weeks. Last week, a pickup truck driver crashed head-on into a school bus and injured four students in the process. Unlike the last driver, the 47-year-old motorist died from his injuries.

Be cautious around buses

Though all of these bus crashes had different circumstances, they do encourage various safety precautions to take before heading out on the road. Students should remain in their seats and put on seatbelts (if available) to prevent serious injuries if the bus goes off the road. Teenagers should familiarize themselves with school bus laws and avoid excessive speeding or reckless driving as they adjust to their new routine.

Other Missouri motorists need to adjust their schedules if they want to avoid buses and traffic and keep their eyes on the road. They also need to refresh themselves on when they should stop if a bus has to pick up or drop of children. Buses are significantly tougher than cars, so motorists can place themselves and the students at serious risk if they are not careful.

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