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Congressman Proposes Bill for Increased School Bus Safety

Destiny Baker3 years ago

U.S. House Representative Bruce Brale, D-Waterloo, announced a new school bus safety bill on Wednesday.

About the Proposed School Bus Bill

According to the Global Gazette, Brale’s proposal is the first national school bus safety bill to be drafted in nearly two decades and comes on the hills of the third anniversary of Kadyn Halverson’s death.

7-year-old Kadyn was struck and killed by a pickup truck in May 2012 as she crossed the road to board her school bus in Worth County, Iowa. In 2012, Iowa adopted Kadyn’s Law, a piece of legislature that allowed for stiffer penalties for drivers who pass school buses while the vehicles have their stop arm extended.

For a first offense, Kadyn’s Law allows for a fine of $250 to $675, up to 30 days in jail, and a 30-day license suspension – in other states, fines can be as low as $30.

Braley is looking to replicate Kadyn’s Law on a national level. If enacted, the law would have a self-funding mechanism through Kadyn’s Law and school bus driver background checks.

Other Parts of the School Bus Bill

In addition to stricter penalties for drivers who illegally pass school buses, the bill would also include:

  • Grants for motion-activated systems that would alert bus drivers when a moving target is detected in front of or behind the bus.
  • Background checks for all school bus drivers.
  • A program which would allow states to apply for funding to purchase or retrofit school buses with seat belts.
  • A technology component through the National Highway Traffic Safety Adminitration (NHTSA) that would encourage drivers to halt for stopped school buses.

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