NAPT MultiView News Brief
Feb. 19, 2013

Vendor Spotlight: On the spot? Come to the spotlight

Business Partners are special members of NAPT. They provide expertise, products and services to the pupil transportation industry, helping to maintain and improve upon the safety and efficiency of operations and processes. Knowing who to call when you're on the spot is important.

To help you find solutions, we highlight our business partners in a scrolling logo format on the NAPT homepage every two weeks. Just click on the company logo to find out more.

Featured in our "Business Partner in the Spotlight" section are: Espar Products Inc., Seon Design Inc., S3/Syntec Seating Solutions, SMI, Vertical School Partners and Zonar Systems. Their logos will be posted for the next few weeks, so please take a moment to become familiar with the products and services they offer.

Espar Products — supplies independent and compact fuel-operated air and coolant heater products to the truck, bus, marine, automotive/pick-ups, off-highway, cargo and military markets. Seon Design — is a provider of mobile video surveillance for the bus and coach industry. S3/Syntec Seating — is a large U.S. provider of school bus seats, having manufactured in excess of 2 million school bus seats. — designs and produces safety and interior solutions at competitive prices for the transportation industry. Vertical School — SafePUPIL's LMS (Learning Management System) is a cost-effective, easy-to-use Web-based solution for delivering content to bus drivers, monitors and other pupil transportation staff. Zonar — provides electronic inspection, GPS fleet tracking, RFID scanning and management solutions for fleet operations in a wide range of industries. More

Tuckahoe students, Secretary LaHood 'Love the Bus'
Arlington Patch
Recently, a flock of youngsters dressed in yellow waited eagerly in the Tuckahoe Elementary School lobby for a few special guests. "I can't wait to meet the bus drivers," said fifth-grader Megan Jones as she waited. She added that she's ridden the bus "even since preschool." A few buses, their drivers and U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood soon arrived at the school in Arlington, Va., to have their picture taken before a short assembly — the American School Bus Council's Love the Bus Main Event.More

Researchers find that billboard advertising distracts drivers
In recent years, it's become increasingly clear just how dangerous distracted driving can be. Mobile carriers like AT&T have implemented programs to encourage drivers to stay off their phones while driving, while Verizon is working in Washington to drive legislation to get tough on these distracted drivers. Yet, while we can control the distractions inside of the vehicle, there's still the issue of distractions outside of the car. Billboards line the roadways, pushing everything from hamburgers to surgical weight loss, alcoholic beverages to DUI lawyers. According to a recent paper published in Accident Analysis and Prevention by University of Alberta researchers Michelle Chan and Anthony Singhai, these billboards can invoke different emotions in drivers. These emotions can then, in turn, distract us and affect the way we drive.More

Online or in person makes little difference in bullying's effect
Psych Central News
A new study finds that how a child is bullied is relatively inconsequential, as all bullying can lead to skipping school and suicidal behavior. Thomas Holt, Ph.D., an associate professor of criminal justice at Michigan State University, discovered children who are bullied online or by mobile phone are just as likely to skip school or consider suicide as children who are physically bullied.More

Business group backs higher gas tax to fix highway system
Reuters via Yahoo News
A leading business group recently threw its support behind the politically unpopular idea of raising the federal gasoline tax to help fund trillions of dollars in projected U.S. infrastructure needs. "The Chamber (of Commerce) supports reasonable increases in gas taxes that are phased in and indexed to inflation," the group's president, Thomas Donohue, told the House of Representatives Committee on Transportation.More

Looking to share your expertise?
In an effort to enhance the overall content of the NAPT MultiView News Brief, we'd like to include peer-written articles in future editions. As a member of NAPT, your knowledge and experience in the industry can be of great help to your fellow members. And we're hoping you'll share this expertise with your peers through well-written commentary. Because of the digital format, there's no word or graphical limit, and our group of talented editors can help with final edits. If you're interested in participating, please contact Ronnie Richard to discuss logistics.More

Books on the bus idea keeps rolling along
Green Bay Press Gazette
Gibraltar, Wis., School District's eight buses recently became rolling libraries when each was outfitted with a bag of books. Vinni Chomeau, friend of a Gibraltar coordinator, was inspired to start the program Books on Buses after reading the Door County Advocate's Oct. 13 story about Southern Door's Books on the Bus initiative. It all began when Southern Door bus driver and support staff member Ted Chaudoir passed along his grown-up daughter's childhood book collection to his riders. Chaudoir took the 75 books and placed them in a cardboard box on his bus and encouraged children to take the books home. Now the books have spread to other buses at Southern Door as well.More

TADD teams with Dylan Martin Racing to combat texting and driving
Seattle Post Intelligencer
Teens Against Distracted Driving has partnered with Dylan Martin Racing to spread awareness of the dangers of texting and driving around the country. Jason Epstein, the founder of TADD and personal injury attorney at Premier Law Group in Washington State, knew that it was important for teens to hear this message from one of their peers. Who better to educate other young drivers about the dangers of distracted driving than a professional race car driver? Add to this that Dylan is 15 years old, and it's clear that he is uniquely situated to teach teens about safe driving habits.More

Hunt for bus drivers goes 'round and 'round
Abilene Reporter-News
Is it time to bus in the bus drivers? As oil prices continue to rise so is the demand for oil field workers, including those with Commercial Drivers Licenses. It's hard for a school district to compete with oil field wages. More

School officials optimistic of bus safety plan despite snags
Rutland Herald Online
It took 20 minutes for a Springfield, Vt., school bus driver to get students to sit in their seats recently, despite a new policy aimed at improving school bus safety. Transportation Committee Coordinator Lisa Hall insists that Project SAFE will reduce the number of students getting out of their seats during the ride and improve safety despite the snag they hit a week after the new program began. More

Government to crack down on unsafe tour bus operators
The Miami Herald
Responding to recent deadly tour bus accidents, teams of federal inspectors will target bus companies with a history of problems as part of a national crackdown aimed at weeding out unsafe operators, the government recently said. Over the next two months, inspectors will examine companies with a history of accidents or whose buses have been pulled off the highway by police and inspectors for safety violations, officials for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said.More

KCS plans Internet on school buses
Kokomo Tribune
Kokomo-Center Schools in Indiana will install wireless Internet on all of its 65 buses by the end of this year — perhaps making it the first district in the state to do so, officials said. The Internet access is part of nearly $200,000 in transportation upgrades planned. Those plans also call for a GPS tracking system in all buses.More

Bullies targeting children on school buses
Experts agree bullying in schools is becoming a nationwide epidemic. But another place kids can be very vulnerable is during the ride to and from school. School bus drivers have focus on the road, watch traffic and listen to their communication radios — it is no surprise that bullying can go unnoticed on school buses.More

Washington Senate passes funding for school security
Washington lawmakers are moving ahead with their first education-spending bill of the year. The state Senate recently voted to approve a $500 million in school construction bonds. Ten million of that would go to equip every school with a panic alarm by 2014, among other security measures. More