Hiring a charter bus for your upcoming event can be one of the safest ways to get your group from point A to point B. Before the big trip, it is essential that you touch base with your group to share some basic safety tips with them. This can help to keep you and everyone else on the road safe. While you are planning the trip, here are some safety tips you should be aware of:
Provide Ample Rest Time
Not only do the passengers on the bus need time to rest, but the bus driver does, too. According to the National Transportation Safety Board, 36 percent of fatal motorcoach crashes in the past decade have had driver fatigue as a contributing factor.
When you’re planning the itinerary, make sure to take the number of hours the driver will be behind the wheel, as well as the total number of hours the driver will have to work, into account. This figure should also include the number of hours you will spend touring a museum or doing other activities at your destination.
As tempting as it might be to try to do everything you can in one day, that can work against your plan to keep everyone safe. Instead, plan a light itinerary or break a heavy itinerary up into more than one day. Even though you want to do it all, your safety is more important.
Take a Safety Tour of the Bus
Before the group gets on the charter bus rental, ask the driver to give you a safety tour of the bus. You should find out how to operate emergency exits, and you’ll need to know where fire extinguishers are located.
During the tour, ask the driver if there is anything else that you need to know regarding safety. The driver will tell you if there are any special safety considerations to be aware of and how to handle them should they arise. You might be given safety handouts or other materials to read. Keep these handy in case you need to refer to them later.
Have a Safety Presentation
Once everyone is on the bus, the bus driver should give a safety presentation. If that doesn’t happen, you should make sure to let the passengers know about the safety guidelines. While some people are in a hurry to get on the road, taking the time to do a safety presentation can provide valuable information that riders need to know to remain as safe as possible.
If you are traveling with a school group, especially if they are younger children, you should work to help them understand bus safety before the day of the trip. Trying to tell younger children everything while on the bus might be too overwhelming for them.
Keep Distractions to a Minimum
You should make sure that everyone on the bus remains calm and always keep distractions to a minimum. While movement on buses is allowed in some instances, it should only occur if absolutely necessary. Keeping distractions to a minimum can help the driver keep their attention on the road.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t have activities or other things going on while the bus is in motion. In fact, controlled activities can help to keep driver distraction to a minimum. Playing games or offering presentations to the people on the bus, such as giving information about the day’s activities, can help riders stay focused and avoid possibly dangerous behaviors.
React Appropriately in the Event of an Incident
You never know when a safety incident will occur on a charter bus rental. No matter what happens, you should remain calm and react in an appropriate manner. Many safety incidents that might occur on a bus are not life-threatening. In many cases, you can react to the incidents in the same way you would if you were not on a bus.
One example of a potential issue is someone spilling a liquid on the bus. If this occurs, you should warn other riders about the spill and make sure it is wiped up as quickly as possible. Wiping it up could prevent a slip-and-fall accident.
Prepare for Special Considerations
If you are traveling with someone who has special needs, such as a diabetic who might need insulin, make sure that you or someone on the bus is prepared to take care of the issue if it should arise. Medical conditions can be especially scary when they happen on a bus, but preparing for them can help you feel more in control.
Make sure that you have the supplies necessary to handle medical issues that may occur. Having inhalers and other medications for asthmatics is a good idea if you are traveling during the summer since heat can trigger an asthma attack. Having an EpiPen and knowing how to use it is a good idea if you are traveling with a person who has known allergies.
Even though the charter bus rental company and its driver have a duty to keep passengers safe, you can help to increase safety by ensuring that you and the riders on the bus are acting in a safe manner. Reckless or careless behavior by people on the bus is an almost sure recipe for disaster.