I want to thank my fellow Board members for their participation today as we
continue our work on school bus safety.
In closing, I'd like to recognize the outstanding work of the NTSB staff who
completed the accident investigation and developed this excellent report; in
particular, the staff from the Office of Highway Safety, Office of Research and
Engineering and the Office of Safety Recommendations. Pete Kotowski, the
Investigator-in-Charge; Michele Beckjord, project manager; and their team did an
excellent job. In addition, Dr. Kris Poland, Dr. Tom Barth, Ron Kaminski and the
occupant kinematics team did an outstanding job documenting the findings from
the on-board video recordings.
Our investigators looked at the drivers, the vehicles and the environment.
Our recommendations address all of these areas. First, while we recognize the
tremendous progress that FMCSA has made under Administrator Ferro's leadership
in finalizing many of the medical program requirements, we identify remaining
vulnerabilities in our investigations and recommend improvements to the
qualifications of those who oversee the medical certification of commercial
Second, we call for technology enhancements to improve vehicle safety.
Notable among these is recommending NHTSA develop minimum performance standards
for connected vehicle technology. With these standards NHTSA can then require
this technology to be installed on all highway vehicles. This technology holds
great promise to protect lives and prevent injuries. Third, today's meeting has
produced key recommendations for occupant protection for young and vulnerable
In about a month it will be back-to-school for our nation's schoolchildren.
Many students will be climbing aboard bright yellow buses for the first time.
Their parents and guardians should know that riding the bus is the safest way to
get to school and home again. Yet, we know improvements can be made.
And, that's the goal of today's report, our recommendations and the work of
the NTSB: saving lives and preventing injuries.
We stand adjourned