School bus inspections and driver training

The Tennessee Highway Patrol’s Pupil Transportation Section ensures that children in Tennessee are safely transported to and from school. In the state, there are an estimated 8,700 school buses that are in operation. Two of the duties we’ll discuss today of the Pupil Transportation Section are bus inspection and bus driver training.

In order for someone to maintain one’s school bus driver license endorsement, he or she must complete a mandatory four-hour training session. At the end of the training, there is a test. In addition, all commercial driver’s licenses are verified, ensuring that driving privileges have not been suspended or revoked. A Certificate of Training is given to each person who successfully completes the training that may be used as proof that he or she attended the class.

If someone does not attend a training session, then he or she will have the “S” endorsement removed. The driver will receive a letter notifying him or her that a downgrade has happened involving his or her “S” endorsement.

School buses are inspected annually and if there are problems, follow-up inspections are conducted. Other inspections will confirm that the bus has been taken out of service. These types of inspections occur randomly.

During the 2013-2014 school year, 99 percent of the buses that were taken out of service were placed back in service when re-inspected in 30 days.

When parents put their children on a school bus, they expect that their child will arrive safe and sound at the intended destination. When there is an accident involving a school bus, there are many individuals and entities that could be held liable for the accident and any resulting injuries. An attorney can provide more information on whom to name as defendants in a school bus accident case.

Source: Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security, “Pupil Transportation,” accessed Oct. 07, 2016