One of the most serious types of highway accidents—collisions involving vehicles traveling the wrong way on high-speed divided highways often cause the most serious and traumatic injuries. In Knoxville, TN the unthinkable happened when two school busses were involved in a head-on crash. The two buses were bringing children home from school when they collided on a Tennessee highway, killing two students and an adult and injuring another 27 people.
Police said a preliminary investigation indicated one bus made a sharp left turn, crossed over a concrete median and hit the second bus, which was traveling in the opposite direction. The second bus flipped onto its side and slid. It’s often after tragic school bus accidents like the one above that people begin to question why school busses don’t have seatbelts. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration school buses don't have seat belts in them because they have a built-in occupant protection system known as "compartmentalization," which is a system of seat height, seat length and padding, among other requirements. Compartmentalization is like an egg carton protecting a child.
The idea of children bouncing around like fragile eggs in a school bus doesn’t’ seem very reassuring. The NHTSA however touts safety statistics that show the annual average of student fatalities during normal school travel times is 1% when riding a school bus compared to 58% when traveling by teen driver and 23% when traveling with an adult driver.