I will not let the bus industry change the debate. According to the bus industry’s own association, they are trying to frame bus safety in a way that will fit their goals. Bus safety is not about “framing” of a question. The reality is that far too many people suffer very serious injuries in bus accidents in Arizona and throughout the country.
It is far too common to see injuries that were preventable because negligent bus drivers fall asleep at the wheel, were not physically able to drive, were negligent in their driving, or for a host of other reasons. Also, knowing that to be true, the question of whether seatbelts should be installed in buses is an obvious one that ought to be asked as a direct yes or no question. However, it is clear that the bus industry would like to avoid this from becoming a “seatbelts, yes or no”, question.
Why do they want to avoid a “yes or no” on the seatbelt question? Will seatbelts save lives? Are there people that will not have to suffer serious injuries because of bus driver negligence and busing company neglect if seatbelts are installed? Even if installing seatbelts will cost money to the operators of commercial buses and school buses across the company, isn’t that worth the lives it may save?
Now, understand this does not necessarily mean that there’s a clear-cut answer as to whether seatbelts should be installed. It is clear that it would seem that installing seatbelts in buses is a good idea. You would think that there would be less Arizona personal injury claims related to busing negligence and bus drivers if we had seatbelts in the buses.
However, let the busing industry show why this isn’t true. But no matter how we “frame the debate,” there ought to be a clear discussion on the seatbelt issue. Then, we agree with the busing association. We should then look at all the other aspects of busing company negligence that is so often overlooked in the question of personal injury cases and auto accidents throughout the country.