According to the national Highway Safety Administration, the agency is seeking to finalize some important regulations by the end of this year, which will include a requirement for seat belts on commercial buses. The original proposal for seatbelts on commercial buses has been long-delayed and met substantial resistance.
While there are some issues to be resolved, the industry has been assured that the current fleet of almost 30,000 commercial buses will not be required to be retrofit with seatbelts. New buses however will be required to have the safety devices.
Some high profile bus accidents including some involving students have put the issue of seatbelts in commercial buses in the spotlight. Even without the safety restraints, traveling by bus is one of the safest methods of travel in the United States.
Rollover accidents are particularly dangerous when there is no seatbelts available or worn. Hopefully the regulations will be finalized soon.
According to the agency, approximately 19 people die per year in a bus accident and a good percentage of them could have been saved with seatbelt use. Wearing a seatbelt reduces the risk of a fatality by 3/4 in a rollover scenario.
Despite the resistance from the bus industry, the regulations will provide an extra level of safety for those who utilize the commercial bus system for travel.
Greg Baumgartner is a Semi accident lawyer in Texas and also the founder of the Baumgartner Law Firm, with its principal office located at 6711 FM 1960 West, Houston, Tx 77069. Toll Free 1-866-758-4529.