Saturday, November 16, 2019
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Photo by David George.

Privatization of Ohio CDL Test Sites Provides School Districts with Choices

The current president of the Ohio Association for Pupil Transportation said that the new privatization of commercial driver’s license (CDL) test sites in Ohio...
Larry Minor, FMCSA associate administrator for policy, discussed the FMCSA entry-level driver training rules with attendees of the 51st Annual NASDPTS Conference on Oct. 15, 2019. (Photo by Taylor Hannon.)

Update: FMCSA Seeks to Propose Delay to Entry-Level Driver Training Rule

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Sighs of relief emanated from the audience at the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services (NASDPTS) annual conference...

FMCSA Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse Registration Now Open

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has announced that users can now create secure online accounts in the new...
Applicants to become bus drivers at Bryan ISD in Texas train to pass their CDL permit test. The school district now has 100 percent of its route filled for the 2019-2020 school year, and backup drivers to fill in when needed.

Texas School District Reverses School Bus Driver Shortage with Pay-to-Train Program

Many school districts and transportation professionals have attempted to solve the driver shortage dilemma at their school district. Simeon Gates, assistant director of transportation...
Students loading bus

FMCSA Proposes Latest Rule to Alleviate Burdens to Obtaining CDL

The U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is seeking to remove financial barriers for new CDL applicants who obtain their learner’s permit in...

FMCSA Announces Partial Delay of Entry-Level Driver Training Rules

The U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) seeks to extend the compliance date for new entry-level driver training rules by exactly two years....

Are Teachers an Answer to the School Bus Driver Shortage?

Prince William County Public Schools in Virginia is experiencing the national school bus driver shortage and location challenges. One of the schools there, Parkside...
The bipartisan Miranda Vargas School Bus Driver Red Flag Act (Miranda’s Law) was formally introduced in the House of Representatives to ensure real-time driver background checks and that states receive the information in a timelier fashion. The bipartisan Miranda Law would require automatic notifications of driver violations to school districts and school bus companies within 24 hours, so they can take immediate action to keep unsafe drivers off the road and away from our children. It would require the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to create an employer notification service, or ENS, and make it mandatory for all school bus drivers across the nation. The bill would require any employer of school bus drivers to participate in the service. Miranda’s Law would also require states to use the ENS to qualify for federal-aid highway funds. When a school bus driver has any driving infraction beyond a parking ticket, Miranda's Law would send an alert to school districts or school bus companies within 24 hours. An ENS, the bill states, gives employers real-time, automatic notifications when a bus driver’s license status changes because of a moving violation conviction, crash, license suspension, or other triggering event. Last May, a crash involving a Paramus Board of Education school bus that was transporting students from East Brook Middle School during a field trip killed 10-year-old Miranda Vargas and teacher Jennifer Williamson-Kennedy. The incident, allegedly caused when the school bus driver attempted a U-turn across multiple lanes of traffic on Route 80, shined a spotlight on what the legislators called flaws in school bus driver oversight. The driver of the bus was found to have had more than 14 license suspensions at the time of the crash. The group of legislators who introduced Miranda’s Law on May 23 said the issue is not limited to New Jersey. Instead, lack of oversight is occurring nationwide, they argue. The National Transportation Safety Board also found a lack of driver oversight caused fatal school bus crashes in Baltimore and Chattanooga, Tennessee in December 2016. The bill is co-sponsored by Reps. Josh Gottheimer (NJ), Elise Stefanik (NY), Tom Reed and Thomas Suozzi (NY), Steve Cohen (TN), Dan Kildee (MI), Elijah Cummings (MD) and Albio Sires (NJ). Current federal regulations require school districts and bus companies check their employees’ driving history records annually. But if a driver fails to self-report a traffic violation or license suspension, it could be up to 364 days before a school district or school bus company receives that information. The legislators said research has shown that only 50- to 80 percent of commercial drivers actually self-report violations. Suspended drivers across all vehicle types have a crash rate 14 times higher than other drivers. “We must strengthen background checks on school bus drivers to protect our children from those, like the driver who drove Miranda’s bus, who have no place getting behind the wheel,” said Gottheimer. “We are here to help turn tragedy into hope for other children and families. I’m glad that Miranda’s father, Joevanny, will be joining me in Washington this spring to tell his story to members of Congress on why our communities so desperately need this school bus safety legislation. Miranda’s Law will help save lives, and there’s nothing partisan about that.” Miranda’s Law builds off a U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) pilot program to implement a robust nationwide employer notification service, with each state required to use the service. It’s cost-effective. Following a feasibility study demonstrating that ENS would pay back at 15:1 and pay for itself in less than a year, DOT ran a pilot program in Colorado and Minnesota, which demonstrated that “a nationwide employer notification service was needed and could have significant safety and monetary benefits for motor carriers.”

Miranda School Bus Driver Law Formally Introduced in U.S. Congress

The bipartisan Miranda Vargas School Bus Driver Red Flag Act (Miranda’s Law) was formally introduced in the House of Representatives to ensure real-time driver...
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FMCSA New Regulations

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has issued new regulations for driver training. Moving Ahead for Progress 2021, MAP21, is expected to save...

November 2019

Greg Jackson of Jefferson County Schools poses with a Blue Bird School Bus
Meet our 2019 Transportation Director of the Year, Greg Jackson, from Jefferson County Schools in Colorado. This...

Buyer’s Guide 2019

Find the latest vehicle production data, state student ridership and budget reports, industry trends and contact information...