Iowa Debating Lap-Shoulder Belts as School Bus Directors Witness Test Crash

Student transporters from across Iowa gathered in Des Moines on July 15, 2019 to witness a test crash amid a State Board of Education debate on whether or not to install seat belts on all school buses statewide. (Screen capture of a KCCI broadcast).
Student transporters from across Iowa gathered in Des Moines on July 15, 2019 to witness a test crash amid a State Board of Education debate on whether or not to install seat belts on all school buses statewide. (Screen capture of a KCCI broadcast).

Student transporters from across Iowa gathered in Des Moines this week to witness a test crash. Meanwhile, the State Board of Education is debating whether or not to approve the installation of lap-shoulder seatbelts on all school buses statewide.

The July 15 event at the Iowa Pupil Transportation Association Annual Conference was the latest to depict what can happen to unbelted students inside the school bus during a crash.

Last month at the STN EXPO Indianapolis, IMMI hosted a live crash test that launched a school bus off a ramp. The bus landed on its two left-side wheels and rolled for several feet before crashing into a concrete barrier and partially rolling onto its left side. Video taken of crash test dummies inside the bus will be aired by NBC News this fall.

Meanwhile, a vote on the Iowa seatbelt proposal has been scheduled for a public meeting on Aug. 1. Earlier this year, the proposed rule was discussed at a hearing of the Board of Education’s Administrative Rules Review Committee, and there has been a public comment period, reported WeAreIowa.com.

Tweets so far, commenting on the KCCI News broadcast (edited for grammar and clarity):

  • David Squires: You needed to crash a bus to see if seat belts are needed?
  • Zach Miro: A kid version of me wouldn’t have wanted seat belts on the bus. The dad version of me says what took you so long on this?
  • Tom Larson: Are there not professional people … engineers, safety groups, etc. … that may have already studied this crazy idea of seatbelts?
  • Nic: Definitely should have crashed more buses and had different forms of crashes, like t-bone and rear-end.
  • Audriana Coleman: If it’s a moving vehicle, seatbelts should be required … simple. Not everything needs to be voted on, especially when our kid’s lives are at stake
  • Josh Gordon: More seatbelts on buses.
  • Chris Engelbrecht: Cool music. Get your glow sticks out. But I think there should be seatbelts.
  • Luke Manning: You seriously needed to crash a bus in order to determine that seatbelts should be installed?
  • Taylor Calvin: I mean … it’s the law for all other vehicles. What makes a bus any different?
  • Peg Demetris: Have we not had enough bus crashes and injured children to make this determination?

Editor’s Note: Screen captures were taken from KCCI broadcasts.