A total of 4854 school bus drivers and supervisors benefited from the traffic awareness program titled “A School Year without Traffic Accidents”. The program, launched by the directorate for the 2013-2014 academic year, aims to improve school transport standards and provide traffic safety for students.

Lt. Colonel Jamal Salem Al Ameri, Chief of Public Relations Section in the Traffic and Patrols Directorate, Abu Dhabi Police, noted that the ten-month program included 74 lectures. “The lectures were designed to raise awareness of school bus drivers and supervisors about the mandatory safety procedures to be followed, the need to comply with the designated average number of passengers for school buses and make sure that each student has a seat.

Furthermore, Lt. Colonel Al Ameri praised the efforts exerted to implement the school bus drivers and supervisors’ awareness program, in coordination with the Abu Dhabi Education Council and Emirates Transport, with a view to providing safe transportation for students.

Adding further, Lt. Colonel Al Ameri stated: “This month, the focus will be on educating school bus drivers on the need to leave a sufficient safety distance between vehicles, park in safe areas while students board and exit the buses and the need for supervisors to supervise students at all times while they board or exit the buses.”

For her part, Captain Aisha Mohammed Al Zaabi, Traffic Awareness Officer at the Public Relations Section, the Traffic and Patrols Directorate, noted that the program focused on educating drivers about traffic law and the need to adhere to speed limits and safety procedures that must be available on school buses. “These procedures include making sure that the bus meets the school bus specifications for student transport, ensure the mechanical safety of the bus, ensuring sufficient safe distance between the bus and students on students assembly points; the availability of a sufficient number of emergency exits depending on the size of the bus and the number of students, providing the bus with a fire extinguisher or more depending on the size of the bus, and ensure the availability of a first aid kit clearly labeled and evident in the bus,” indicated Captain Al Zaabi.

Captain Al Zaabi also said that the program acquainted school bus supervisors with the tasks they must undertake to maintain the safety of students while they are on board of the bus. She said: “School bus supervisors must make sure that students are well seated and that they remain calm during the ride. They must also supervise the safety of students while boarding and exiting the bus since they are dropped off by their parents or guardians; assist students as they board and exit the bus; assist students with crossing the streets safely; provide them with the necessary assistance; contact competent authorities in cases of emergency; ensure that no students are left on board at the final destination; follow instructions and apply the skills needed to ensure the safety of students while boarding and exiting the bus.”
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