Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Our condolences

to the families of the four children who died, Dennis Devereaux the bus driver, the bus owner and the drivers of the other two vehicles involved in the crash yesterday afternoon down in Cottonwood.

Photo credit:(AP Photo/Marshall Independent,Rae Kruger)


Anonymous said...

Our condolences to Dale and Dorothy Poffenberger of Detroit Lakes whose granddaughter Emilee was killed in the bus crash this week.

Anonymous said...

My heart breaks for the families of the children that were lost...and children who were injured. My prayers are with them all.

A question that keeps coming up in conversation is, why aren't there seat belts installed in school buses? Besides the fact that it would be near impossible to regulate with all of the kids.

Jim, could you put in your two cents? Thanks

Jim Christianson said...

I am neither for or against seat belts in school buses. In the case of a side impact like this I think belts could save lives if the kids would use them. Seat belts could also be used as weapons, unless we had those with no buckles. The seats we have now are deemed safe as long as kids will stay in them and not stand or sit on the seat.
When the Legislature says do it and appropriates the funds it's going to take (1/3 more buses and drivers?) I'll be ready. With not enough money to even maintain the highways in the state and a Governor who will veto any tax increase, I think seat belts are a ways off. How about urban transit and trains? Same deal? The argument is being re-hashed on the Road Guy blog in The Star Tribune:

The school bus/seat belt debate goes ’round and ’round
Wednesday, February 20th, 2008

Whenever there’s a serious school bus accident — or, in the case of Tuesday’s crash, a horrific one — the lack of seat belts on school buses invariably comes up, and newspapers invariably write about it. (A short story I wrote last night is here, a longer 2005 story from the Washington Post is here, etc.)

Only a few states have moved to require seat belts on all buses, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration explains here why it doesn’t feel that belts are necessary. Reasons for not having them include the current low death rate aboard school buses, the cost, the fact that children might wear them improperly, the risk of abdominal injuries, the possibility that belts would lower the capacity of buses, and the difficulty of evacuating children who are belted in. On the other hand, time might tell whether some of yesterday’s deaths and injuries could have been prevented by a simple device found in most other moving vehicles; an organization that supports belts on buses is here (and alert reader Arthur’s entry in the comments below offers a counterpoint to the NHTSA position).

What’s your take? Would kids be safer belted in? Would they actually wear them? Could the belts be configured in a way that wouldn’t require booster seats? Who would pay the extra cost? Please share your thoughts and ideas below.

Anonymous said...

New information on regarding the driver of the van.

Anonymous said...

Why don't we actually deal with the cause of this tragedy and start deporting these illegal alliens!

Anonymous said...

The cause of this tragedy is called an accident. I do believe those happen to US citizens as well.... I think it might be a good idea to use our negative energy toward something positive instead -pray for all those involved. Which is worse? Losing a child, or knowing that you took the lives of four children??? God help me from being in either set of shoes....