HomeIndustry ReleasesBlue Bird Launches Most Comprehensive School Bus Safety Upgrades in its History

Blue Bird Launches Most Comprehensive School Bus Safety Upgrades in its History

Industry-first Standardization of Seat Belts, Driver Air Bag and Other Safety Features.

MACON, Ga. – Blue Bird Corporation (Nasdaq: BLBD), the leader in electric and low-emission school buses, announced the most comprehensive safety upgrades to its school buses in the company’s history. Blue Bird buses will feature an unprecedented array of safety systems to protect school children, bus drivers and other road users. Blue Bird advances its safety leadership to help prevent injuries and save lives.

School buses make up the largest mass transit transportation system in the United States with approx. 480,000 school buses in operation. More than 25 million children and over 175,000 drivers travel on school buses every weekday nationwide. Those buses cover nearly six billion miles per year.

Starting in the fall of 2024, Blue Bird will begin equipping new school buses with a series of industry-first safety features, enhancing the safety of school children and school bus drivers. For the first time in student transportation history, new Blue Bird buses will be equipped with three-point seat belts as standard protection for all student passengers. Other seat options will still be available to meet specific customer needs. As an additional industry first, Blue Bird will safeguard school bus drivers with the introduction of 4Front, a steering wheel deployed air bag. Blue Bird teamed up with IMMI, an employee-owned, leading global supplier of advanced safety systems and restraints based in Indiana, to develop these industry-leading safety enhancements in student transportation.

Blue Bird will also be implementing a series of improvements to increase the performance of the school bus and its safety on the road. To improve visibility for the bus driver and other motorists, Blue Bird will adopt high-intensity LED lighting on the outside and inside of the bus, high-resolution front and rear cameras, as well as lighted stop arms, lighted school bus signs, and strobe lights. Blue Bird will also be implementing high-tech systems to improve vehicle safety, including collision mitigation systems being added to the currently-standard electronic stability control (ESC).

“For nearly a century, our children’s safety has been our business. We proudly carry millions of school children every year, the most precious cargo in the world,” said Britton Smith, president of Blue Bird Corporation. “Today we raise the bar even higher for student transportation by announcing the most comprehensive safety upgrades to our school buses in our history.”

“We are thrilled to partner with iconic school bus manufacturer Blue Bird as their new seating and advanced safety supplier,” said Larry Gray, CEO of IMMI. “School buses carry millions of school children every day and literally our nation’s future. We applaud Blue Bird for its bold leadership to make lap-shoulder belts standard safety equipment, while also leading the way to better protect drivers.”

Blue Bird is the only U.S.-owned and operated school bus manufacturer in the United States. The Georgia-based company employs approx. 2,000 team members.

About Blue Bird Corporation:
Blue Bird (NASDAQ: BLBD) is recognized as a technology leader and innovator of school buses since its founding in 1927. Our dedicated team members design, engineer and manufacture school buses with a singular focus on safety, reliability, and durability. School buses carry the most precious cargo in the world 25 million children twice a day making them the most trusted mode of student transportation. The company is the proven leader in low- and zero-emission school buses with more than 20,000 propane, natural gas, and electric powered buses in operation today. Blue Bird is transforming the student transportation industry through cleaner energy solutions. For more information on Blue Bird’s complete product and service portfolio, visit

About IMMI:
For more than 60 years, IMMI has been the industry leader in the design, testing and manufacturing of advanced safety systems, operating from world-class headquarters on a 70-acre campus in Westfield, Ind. IMMI was founded in 1961 as Indiana Mills and Manufacturing, Inc. With four employees and two sewing machines, the company manufactured and distributed seat belts for automotive applications. Today, IMMI has grown into a global company that specializes in bringing innovative customized safety solutions to people throughout the world, with facilities in North America, Mexico, China and Europe. An ongoing dedication to “Bringing Safety to People” is the hallmark of the company, and this commitment continues today as IMMI pioneers the latest generation of advanced safety systems. With the vision of a safer future for every child and adult riding in a vehicle, IMMI produces hundreds of innovative products for various sectors. IMMI products are found on commercial, industrial, military and emergency response vehicles, as well as on school buses, motorcoaches and child restraints. For more information, visit


July 2024

Learn more about the STN 2024 Innovator of the Year, Dr. Pallav Prakash, director of electrification program management for...

Buyer’s Guide 2024

Find the latest vehicle production data and budget reports, industry trends, and contact information for state, national and federal...


Have you attended a professional development conference or training this summer?
93 votes