DOT chief touts school bus safety

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Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx touted buses as the safest way for children to get to school on Monday.

Foxx said school buses were by far the most effective way to transport students to their school buildings.

"The data on school transportation are clear--the safest way to get our most precious cargo to school and home each day is on a large school bus with a well-trained driver," Foxx wrote in a blog post on the Department of Transportation's (DOT) website.

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"According to data from our National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, students are about 50 times more likely to arrive at school alive if they ride the bus than if they drive themselves or ride with friends," Foxx continued. "Students are also about 20 times more likely to arrive to school alive if they ride the bus than if driven by a parent. Of the school-aged children killed in crashes during school hours, just 1 percent are in school buses."

Foxx was writing to commemorate the Alexandria, VA-based American School Bus Council's (ASBC) month-long "Love The Bus" campaign. The DOT chief said he traveled to an elementary school in his home state of North Carolina last week to help raise awareness about the safety of school buses.

"On Friday, at Oak Hill Elementary School in High Point, NC, I joined Principal Ashton Wheeler Clemmons, Guilford County School Superintendent Maurice Green, and High Point Mayor Bernita Sims in a Love The Bus celebration to give those buses and their drivers the thanks they deserve," said Foxx, who is a former mayor of Charlotte, N.C.

Foxx said school bus drivers were "doing more than just carting passengers
 
"They are connecting America's children with all of the great opportunities that come from the chance to learn, grow, and succeed at school," Foxx said. "That's right, succeed.  Because research indicates that a good day at school begins with a positive experience getting to school.  And for many families, the school bus is the only reliable way their children can get to and from the schoolhouse door."