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4.3 – On the Road

4.3.1 – Passenger Supervision

Many charter and intercity carriers have passenger comfort and safety rules. Mention rules about smoking, drinking or use of radio and tape players at the start of the trip. Explaining the rules at the start will help avoid trouble later on.

While driving, scan the interior of your bus as well as the road ahead, to the sides and to the rear. You may have to remind riders about rules or to keep arms and heads inside the bus.

4.3.2 – At Stops

Riders can stumble when getting on or off and when the bus starts or stops. Caution riders to watch their step when leaving the bus. Wait for them to sit down or brace themselves before starting. Starting and stopping should be as smooth as possible to avoid rider injury.

Occasionally, you may have a drunk or disruptive rider. You must ensure this rider's safety as well as that of others. Do not discharge such riders where it would be unsafe for them. It may be safer at the next scheduled stop or a well-lighted area where there are other people. Many carriers have guidelines for handling disruptive riders.

4.3.3 – Common Accidents

The Most Common Bus Accidents. Bus accidents often happen at intersections. Use caution, even if a signal or stop sign controls other traffic. School and mass transit buses sometimes scrape off mirrors or hit passing vehicles when pulling out from a bus stop. Remember the clearance your bus needs and watch for poles and tree limbs at stops. Know the size of the gap your bus needs to accelerate and merge with traffic. Wait for the gap to open before leaving the stop. Never assume other drivers will brake to give you room when you signal or start to pull out.

4.3.4 – Speed on Curves

Accidents on curves result from excessive speed, often when rain or snow has made the road slippery. Every banked curve has a safe “design speed.” In good weather, the posted speed is safe for cars but it may be too high for many buses. With good traction, the bus may roll over; with poor traction, it might slide off the curve. Reduce speed for curves. If your bus leans toward the outside on a banked curve, you are driving too fast.

4.3.5 – Railroad-highway Crossings Stops Stop at Railroad Crossings

Stop at all railroad crossings:

  • Listen and look in both directions for trains. You should open your forward door if it improves your ability to see or hear an approaching train.
  • Before crossing after a train has passed, make sure there is not another train coming in the other direction on other tracks.
  • If your bus has a manual transmission, never change gears while crossing the tracks.
  • You do not have to stop, but must slow down and carefully check for other vehicles:
    • At streetcar crossings.
    • Where a police officer or flagman is directing traffic.
    • If a traffic signal is green.
    • At crossings marked as “exempt” or “abandoned.”

Multiple-Choice Questions:

Question #228 (1 of 4)

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Which of the following is true about crossing the railroad tracks with a bus?

  • You do not have to stop at RR crossings but look both ways beforehand. You may change gears when crossing the tracks.
  • Stop your bus between 50 and 75 feet before railroad crossings, then again at about 10 feet before the crossing. Make sure you are upshifting as you cross the tracks to accelerate away from danger.
  • All of these are true
  • Stop your bus between 15 and 50 feet before railroad crossings. If your bus has a manual transmission, never change gears while crossing the tracks

Stop at all railroad crossings:

  • Listen and look in both directions for trains. You should open your forward door if it improves your ability to see or hear an approaching train.
  • Before crossing after a train has passed, make sure there is not another train coming in the other direction on other tracks.
  • If your bus has a manual transmission, never change gears while crossing the tracks.
  • You do not have to stop, but must slow down and carefully check for other vehicles:
    • At streetcar crossings.
    • Where a police officer or flagman is directing traffic.
    • If a traffic signal is green.
    • At crossings marked as “exempt” or “abandoned.”
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Question #226 (2 of 4)

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Which of the following is true about buses going around curves?

  • Accidents on curves result from excessive speed. In good weather, the posted speed is safe for cars, but it may be too high for many buses. With good traction, the bus may roll over; with poor traction, it might slide off the curve.
  • Accidents on curves rarely happen. In good weather, the posted speed is safe for all vehicles. With good traction, the bus will get around the curve safely at the posted speed limit.
  • Accidents on curves mostly result from low tire pressures. In good weather, the posted speed is safe for cars but never for buses. With good traction, the bus may perform well; with poor traction, it might roll over.
  • All of these are true
Accidents on curves result from excessive speed. The posted speed is safe for cars in good weather, but it may be too high for many buses. With good traction, the bus may roll over; with poor traction, it might slide off the curve.
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Question #225 (3 of 4)

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Which of the following are true about bus stops and intersections?

  • Know the size of the gap your bus needs to accelerate and merge with traffic. Wait for the gap to open before leaving the stop. Never assume other drivers will brake to give you room when you signal or start to pull out.
  • Remember the clearance your bus needs and watch for poles and tree limbs at stops
  • School and mass transit buses sometimes scrape off mirrors or hit passing vehicles when pulling out from a bus stop
  • All of these are correct

The Most Common Bus Accidents. Bus accidents often happen at intersections. Use caution, even if a signal or stop sign controls other traffic. School and mass transit buses sometimes scrape off mirrors or hit passing vehicles when pulling out from a bus stop. Remember the clearance your bus needs and watch for poles and tree limbs at stops. Know the size of the gap your bus needs to accelerate and merge with traffic. Wait for the gap to open before leaving the stop. Never assume other drivers will brake to give you room when you signal or start to pull out.

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Question #224 (4 of 4)

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Occasionally, you may have a drunk or disruptive rider. Which of the following is true about a drunk or disruptive rider?

  • You should ignore anyone who is drunk or disruptive. Giving them attention only makes things worse. Encourage the other passengers to do the same.
  • If a rider is drunk or disruptive, they have given up their rights as a passenger. Remove them from the bus quickly before they do any harm to the other passengers.
  • Your treatment of anyone who is drunk or disruptive is an example to the other passengers. Restrain the passenger if you can. Ask for help from other passengers if you must. Once restrained, call the police.
  • You must ensure this rider's safety as well as that of others. Do not discharge such riders where it would be unsafe for them. It may be safer at the next scheduled stop or a well-lighted area where there are other people. Many carriers have guidelines for handling disruptive riders.
Occasionally, you may have a drunk or disruptive rider. You must ensure this rider's safety as well as that of others. Do not discharge such riders where it would be unsafe for them. It may be safer at the next scheduled stop or a well-lighted area where there are other people. Many carriers have guidelines for handling disruptive riders.
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