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It’s School Bus Safety Week

This is National School Bus Safety Week and attention is brought to safety transporting children, even in the Selma School System. -- Laura Fenton photo

SELMA — Looking left, right and left again and making eye contact with a school bus driver are two of many tips for children to remember when crossing the street in front of a school bus.

This week is National School Bus Safety Week, a time designed to educate students, parents and teachers about the importance of safety precautions in and around school buses.

“It’s one of those things you do because school bus safety is extremely important and anything we can do cut down on injuries and fatalities, not only to children but for other motorists, is important,” said Joe Lightsey, director of transportation for the state Department of Education. “I think it’s had a tremendous impact.”

The theme “Cross in view, it’s the right thing to do” reminds children to stand far enough in front of a school bus for the driver to see them before crossing the street.

According to The American School Bus Council, children should follow these tips:

Be alert to traffic. Check both ways for cars before stepping off bus.

Make eye contact with the bus driver and wait for the bus driver’s signal before crossing the street.

Walk in front of the bus; never walk behind the bus to cross the street.

While waiting for the bus, stay in a safe place away from the street.

Selma City Schools operate 11 buses and Dallas County Schools operate 90 buses.

In addition to the campaign to increase safety in and around school buses, Gov. Bob Riley will release results on Oct. 25 from a three-year study, which analyzed the impact of placing seat belts on school buses.

Riley created the study about a bus crash in Huntsville Nov. 2006, which killed four students and injured six others.

National School Bus Safety Week began in the early 1990s.