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10.4.4 – Special Situations

Bus Stalls or Trapped on Tracks. If your bus stalls or is trapped on the tracks, get everyone out of the bus and off the tracks immediately. Move everyone far from the bus at an angle, both away from the tracks and toward the train.

Law Enforcement Officer at the Crossing. If a law enforcement officer is at the crossing, obey the officer’s directions. If there is no officer and you believe the signal is malfunctioning, call your dispatcher to report the situation and ask for instructions on how to proceed.

Obstructed View of Tracks. Plan your route so it provides maximum sight distance at highway/rail grade crossings. Do not attempt to cross the tracks unless you can see far enough down the track to know for certain that no trains are approaching. Be especially careful at “passive” crossings, which do not have any type of traffic control device. Even if there are active railroad signals that indicate the tracks are clear, you must look and listen to be sure it is safe to proceed.

Containment or Storage Areas. If it will not fit, do not commit! Know the length of your bus and the size of the containment area at highway-rail crossings on the school bus route, as well as any crossing you encounter in the course of a school activity trip. When approaching a crossing with a signal or stop sign on the opposite side, pay attention to how much room there is. Be certain the bus has enough containment or storage area to completely clear the railroad tracks on the other side if there is a need to stop. As a general rule, add 15 feet to the length of the school bus to determine an acceptable amount of containment or storage area.

10.5 – Student Management

10.5.1 – Problems When Loading and Unloading

Do not deal with problems when loading or unloading.

In order to get students to and from school safely and on time, you need to be able to concentrate on the driving task. Loading and unloading require all your concentration. Do not take your eyes off what is happening outside the bus. If there is a behavior problem on the bus, wait until the students unloading are safely off the bus and have moved away. If necessary, pull the bus over to handle the problem.

10.5.2 – Handling Serious Problems

Tips for handling serious problems:

  • Follow your school’s procedures for discipline or refusal of rights to ride the bus.
  • Stop the bus. Park in a safe location off the road, perhaps a parking lot or a driveway.
  • Secure the bus. Take the ignition key with you if you leave your seat.
  • Stand up and speak respectfully to the offender or offenders. Speak in a courteous manner with a firm voice. Remind the offender of the expected behavior. Do not show anger but do show that you mean business.
  • If a change of seating is needed, request that the student move to a seat near you.
  • Never put a student off the bus except at school or at his or her designated school bus stop. If you believe that the offense is serious enough that you cannot safely drive the bus, call for a school administrator or the police to come and remove the student. Always follow your state or local procedures for requesting assistance.

Multiple-Choice Questions:

Question #491 (1 of 3)

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If there is a behavior problem on the bus while unloading students, when should you handle it?

  • Immediately. Do not let a situation on the bus continue, even during unloading
  • Before the students leave the bus. If there is a problem, keep the students waiting on the bus while you handle the situation
  • Wait until the students unloading are safely off the bus and have moved away.
  • While the students are unloading. Let the students get off the bus on their own while you handle the situation
In order to get students to and from school safely and on time, you need to be able to concentrate on the driving task. Loading and unloading require all your concentration. Do not take your eyes off what is happening outside the bus. If there is a behavior problem on the bus, wait until the students unloading are safely off the bus and have moved away. If necessary, pull the bus over to handle the problem.
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Question #492 (2 of 3)

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If there is a serious behavior problem on the bus, which of the following is NOT the proper way to handle it?

  • Stop the bus. Park in a safe location off the road, perhaps a parking lot or a driveway.
  • Put the student off the bus immediately, regardless of location along the route.
  • If a change of seating is needed, request that the student move to a seat near you.
  • Stand up and speak respectfully to the offender or offenders. Speak in a courteous manner with a firm voice. Remind the offender of the expected behavior. Do not show anger but do show that you mean business.

Tips for handling serious problems:

  • Follow your school’s procedures for discipline or refusal of rights to ride the bus.
  • Stop the bus. Park in a safe location off the road, perhaps a parking lot or a driveway.
  • Secure the bus. Take the ignition key with you if you leave your seat.
  • Stand up and speak respectfully to the offender or offenders. Speak in a courteous manner with a firm voice. Remind the offender of the expected behavior. Do not show anger but do show that you mean business.
  • If a change of seating is needed, request that the student move to a seat near you.
  • Never put a student off the bus except at school or at his or her designated school bus stop. If you believe that the offense is serious enough that you cannot safely drive the bus, call for a school administrator or the police to come and remove the student. Always follow your state or local procedures for requesting assistance.
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Question #490 (3 of 3)

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If your school bus stalls on the tracks, get the students off the bus and move them where?

  • Far from the bus at an angle, both away from the tracks and toward the train
  • Far from the bus and perpendicular to the bus, both along the tracks and away the train
  • Far from the bus and perpendicular to the tracks, both toward the tracks and toward the train
  • Far from the bus at an angle, both away from the tracks and away from the train

Bus Stalls or Trapped on Tracks. If your bus stalls or is trapped on the tracks, get everyone out of the bus and off the tracks immediately. Move everyone far from the bus at an angle, both away from the tracks and toward the train.

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