NAPT MultiView News Brief
Jul. 31, 2012

NAPT forms partnership with Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in Dubai
Dubai Roads and Transport Authority and NAPT
The Dubai Roads and Transport Authority is tapping into the expertise of the National Association for Pupil Transportation to ensure students in the Emirate have world-class school transportation. The two organizations are entering into a formal partnership to share information and experiences, and will co-host a school transportation Summit next spring in Dubai.More

News bill sets standards for school bus wheelchair lifts
Toledo Legal News
A Canfield, Ohio, lawmaker has introduced a bill into the Ohio General Assembly that would establish inspection and repair standards for wheelchair lifts installed on vehicles used for student transportation. Of the provisions outlined in the bill, each wheelchair lift installed on a vehicle used for pupil transportation would have to be inspected by a person certified by the original manufacturer. If someone from the manufacturer is not available, the proposal allows for an alternative certification process. In addition, the public safety department would be permitted to establish standards to verify and maintain certification of an inspector.More

Fatigued driver, an unsafe operator and ineffective oversight caused deadly Virginia motorcoach crash
National Transportation Safety Board
A severely fatigued motorcoach driver who lost control of the vehicle, the failure of Sky Express Inc. to manage safe driving practices and a lack of adequate regulatory oversight was the probable cause of a fatal motorcoach crash in Doswell, Va., last May, the National Transportation Safety Board said.More

Commentary: To cut down on bullying, transform school culture
Minnesota Public Radio News
Christopher Nelson writes, "When new students or teachers arrive at a school, they quickly find out what's allowed or not. In the case of a bully, teachers, staff, administrators and students all agree on what's not OK, and the group relays that message to the bully. The challenge is to assimilate the bully into feeling like he or she now belongs to this new group, rather than feeling ostracized. It's difficult, but if the school can welcome the bully, and I think this is key, you've started to develop positive school culture, because instead of feeling pushed out, the bully now has something to push for, and it's being a positive member of a group. Victims, or targets of bullying, also have a stronger connection, and learn to stand up for themselves because of that perceived sense of support."More

No explanations as traffic deaths jump 13.5 percent
Streetsblog Capitol Hill
In the first three months of this year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 7,630 people died in traffic crashes on American streets. That's 910 more than the first quarter of last year — a sobering 13.5 percent increase. "If these projections for the first quarter of 2012 are realized, it will represent the second largest year-to-year quarterly increase in fatalities since NHTSA began recording traffic fatalities (1975)," the agency said in its report. "The largest recorded year-to-year quarterly increase by NHTSA was a 15.3-percent increase in fatalities during the first quarter of 1979." This is only the third quarter since 2006 to see an increase in fatalities.More

NTSB study of March bus crash in St. Lucie may provide insight to preventing side-impact injuries
The Palm Beach Post
The outcome of a federal investigation into the fatal St. Lucie County school bus accident in March that killed one student and seriously injured others may eventually spare others the same fate. The National Transportation Safety Board is focusing on that accident, and a similar one about a month before in New Jersey, because both may hold clues to understanding how to protect students in what is a rare occurrence: catastrophic side impact collisions of school buses and large trucks, NTSB investigator Kristin Poland said.More

School districts split anti-bullying funds
Suburban via Greater Media Newspapers
New Jersey's landmark Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights may no longer be an unfunded mandate, but for many school districts it is a thoroughly under-funded one. In April, the state Legislature passed a law allocating $1 million to the Bullying Prevention Fund to help school districts implement the new anti-bullying measures and keep the 2011 law on the books. But with nearly 400 school districts filing requests for a combined $1 million, funds were quickly exhausted and districts received only about one-fifth of the amount requested.More

GM working on Wi-Fi Direct application to prevent vehicle and pedestrian accidents
General Motors has announced that it is working on a way to use Wi-Fi Direct to alert drivers to the presence of pedestrians so as to avoid running over them. Wi-Fi Direct is a new technology that is beginning to be implemented into many new smartphones that allows the phones to communicate with one another directly, i.e. without the need for a hot spot, cell tower etc. GM had previously announced it was looking into using the technology to allow cars to communicate with one another so that the system could alert driver's to slow-downs, accidents or road hazards.More

Aiea mom: 'School bus cuts are putting my kids' lives in danger'
Honolulu Civil Beat
VideoBrief Nicholas tightened the strap to his bucket hat and put on his neon yellow safety vest with the words "Nobody Gets Hurt" emblazoned on the back. His mom, Anne Rice, was busy helping his 4-year-old sister, Hayden, with her floppy hat and bright orange vest. Holding hands, they set out from the Aiea school's parking lot. Forty-five minutes later, the trio arrived at their house in Halawa Heights — an almost 500-foot elevation gain along winding roads with narrow shoulders and speeding traffic. Rice is familiarizing herself with the route because she plans to walk it twice daily with her children when class resumes July 30. That's because the state won't be providing school bus service for this area next year.More

Village to use school bus for train shuttle
Adirondack Daily Enterprise
The village of Saranac Lake, N.Y., plans to use a school bus to shuttle visitors arriving on Adirondack Scenic Railroad tourist trains from Lake Placid to downtown. The Saranac Lake Central School District Board of Education recently voted unanimously to sell one of its old buses to the village for $1. In return, the village will provide the school district with sand from its sand pit at no charge.More

2012 Summit keynote presentation announcements

As promised, the NAPT Summit has something for everyone. In addition to previously announced scheduled speakers Alan Brunacini, Melinda Jacobs, Esq., and Christopher A. Hart, we're pleased to announce two additional guest speakers: Michael Eugene and Anne S. Ferro.

Michael Eugene – COO of Orange County Public Schools
Chief Operations Officer of Orange County Public Schools, Michael Eugene facilitates high performing services in the areas of student transportation, food and nutrition services, information technology, safety & security, purchasing services, supply and distribution, environmental services and building code enforcement. Prior to OCPS, Eugene served as the business manager for the Los Angeles Unified School District, and the COO for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.

Since 2005, Eugene has served in a voluntary capacity as the co-director of the Council of Great City Schools' "Managing for Results in America's Great City Schools" key performance indicator program.

Anne S. Ferro – FMCSA Administrator
Administrator Ferro of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is committed to protecting the traveling public by eliminating severe crashes and fatalities involving large trucks and buses. Ferro serves as the head of an agency that carries out its safety mission to raise the bar for motor carrier safety; require high safety standards to operate, and remove unsafe carriers and drivers from our roads.

In her first two years, Administrator Ferro has led FMCSA's actions to fulfill its safety-focused mission, including rules to ban texting and hand-held cell phone use for truck and bus drivers; an hours-of-service rule for trucking to reduce the risk of fatigue-related crashes, among other initiatives.

Prior to her appointment to the FMCSA, Ferro led the Maryland Motor Truck Association as its president and chief executive officer from 2003 to 2009; and served as the State of Maryland's Motor Vehicle Administrator from 1997 to 2003.More