What happens when there is a school bus accident but the driver is unable to report it? That’s the scenario that played out in a drill, simulating a collision between a school bus carrying students and another vehicle, which was recently held in Batavia, IL. The mock crash was a coordinated effort between Illinois Central School Bus, Batavia Public Schools and the Batavia fire and police departments. Students participated as “victims” and the bus driver played an “unconscious victim”. In an interview with School Transportation News, superintendent for Batavia Public Schools Dr. Jack Barshinger explained the drill was held in order to proactively test and evaluate the emergency response systems “to ensure that each agency is fully prepared to respond and execute systems in the event of a real crisis.” Dawn O’Connell, Illinois Central’s contract manager, told the publication that the biggest lesson learned from the drill was what process needed to be put into place if the driver is unable to call in and report an accident. “We have reinforced with our bus evacuation team that the older students need to be instructed what to do if the driver is not responsive, such as utilizing the bus radio, their cell phones to call 911, etc.” O’Connell said if a crash occurs during midday, the company will utilize any buses closest to district schools to respond versus waiting the twenty minutes it may take for a bus to come from base. The company operates 104 buses to transport nearly 4,000 students each day for Batavia and surrounding schools. Also participating in the drill were the Tri-Com Central Dispatch and Southern Fox Valley and Central DuPage Emergency Medical Services System. Drills such as this one help to ensure that everyone knows what to do in an accident situation. If your child has been injured in an accident caused by the reckless actions of another driver, contact an experienced Illinois attorney to find out what compensation your family may be entitled to for pain and loss.
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