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Bus Security Basics: Vulnerable, High-Profile Targets Such as Buses Require a Creative and Comprehensive Focus on Security

NCJ Number
Campus Safety Journal Volume: 11 Issue: 9 Dated: October 2003 Pages: 12-15
Michael Dorn
Date Published
October 2003
4 pages
This article address concerns about school bus security and offers recommendations for increasing the security of school buses.
Although the data reveal that school buses are the safest means to transport children to and from school, crime and violence impact student transportation frequently enough to cause concern. As such, improving school bus security is necessary to ensure the safety of those utilizing this type of transportation. The article identifies several areas of bus transportation that should be addressed in security efforts: the selection of transportation personnel, security of buses while they are in transit, security at bus stops, and emergency responses in crisis situations and while buses are in storage after hours. The screening of transportation personnel, while time consuming and costly, is noted as a critical aspect in ensuring the safety of those who utilize bus transportation, especially under the current terrorism threat. Protecting the safety of buses while they are in transit involves the careful implementation of operating procedures and the training of transportation personnel in handling potentially dangerous situations. Also discussed in the article is the utilization of security equipment such as communication devices, security cameras, and tracking systems. Gauging and controlling the risk for violence at bus stops and the risk of violence in destination cities is detailed; recommendations include placing an officer at problematic bus stops and training bus drivers in handling violent bus stop confrontations. Finally, steps that can be taken to ensure the security of buses while they are not in use are offered and additional resources for bus safety are listed.