Seat belts could reduce risk of serious or fatal injuries in Missouri bus accidents

Seat belts could reduce risk of serious or fatal injuries in Missouri bus accidents

Federal safety officials are looking at whether seat belts could have helped save lives and prevent injuries in the recent Missouri school bus accident on I-44, St. Louis Public Radio reported.

As we reported on our St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer Blog, two students were killed and more than 50 were injured when two school buses collided with a semi while en route to a Six Flags amusement park.

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The accident has renewed the debate over seat belts on school buses, which were first suggested by a safety task force in 2005 after two dozen students were hurt in a school bus accident near Kansas City.

The Missourian reported that the busing industry contends that buses are safe without seat belts because the tall padded seats are designed to protect children in the event of an accident — much the way eggs are protected in a carton. However, the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services advocates installation of seat belts at an estimated cost of $10,000 per bus.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has just proposed a new rule requiring all new motorcoaches and commercial buses to have shoulder and lap belts by 2013. However, the new rules would not apply to school buses.

The federal government reports seat belts could reduce fatalities in rollover crashes by 77 percent. It’s a critical safety issue because an estimated 750 million people travel by bus each year, making it the most popular form of mass transportation. The government estimates the cost of installing the belts in new buses at about $13,000. However, the belts would not be required in the 30,000 motorcoaches already on the road.

If you have been injured on school or business property, contact St. Louis Injury Lawyer Ryan R. Cox for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 636-946-6886.

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Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC

Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC is a litigation law firm that represents individuals and families in serious personal injury and wrongful death claims throughout Missouri. We help people who have been injured in all types of accidents—including car or truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, slip and fall accidents, and much more. Whether your injury is something that can cause long-term issues like a brain injury or spinal cord injury, or it is something you’ll likely make a full recovery from, we are here to help.

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