October 16-20, 2017: Michigan School Bus Safety Week

WHEREAS, riding on a school bus is arguably the most efficient and safest forms of transportation for schoolchildren as they are transported to and from school or school-related events; and,

WHEREAS, one school bus replaces 44 automobiles on the highway reducing crashes, air pollution and fuel consumption; and,

WHEREAS, there are 824 school bus fleets in the state of Michigan, ranging in size from 1 to 300 school buses.  These fleets service both public and private schools, with the average size fleet being 18 buses; and,

WHEREAS, 20,000 highly trained school bus drivers safely transport school children on a daily basis.  These drivers undergo basic and advanced driver training, performance testing, fingerprinting, continuous driver record and criminal background checks, random alcohol & drug testing, and biennial medical examinations; and,

WHEREAS, there are nearly 17,000 school buses in service across our state, and all school buses must follow a rigorous local maintenance program and an annual Michigan State Police 280 point performance and safety inspection; and,

WHEREAS, Michigan law requires motorists to prepare to stop when a school bus displays its overhead alternately flashing amber lights and to stop when a school bus displays its overhead alternately flashing red lights.  Further, when a school bus displays its hazard amber flashing lights, a motorist should proceed slowly and with caution while passing; and,

WHEREAS, approximately 700,000 early childhood, primary, and secondary students plus 36,000 special needs schoolchildren ride to and from school each day; and,

WHEREAS, nearly 900,000 miles are logged each day by school buses, with the average bus travelling between 72 miles and 136 miles a day, and between 13,000 and 25,000 miles each year;

NOW THEREFORE, I, Rick Snyder, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim October 16-20, 2017 as Michigan School Bus Safety Week.