How can you ensure that your minibus is as safe as possible?

As scary as it sounds, almost all road collisions and crashes are either caused by or involve human error. Obviously, sometimes simple accidents happen, but it’s very important to be aware of mistakes you, or your minibus driver, might be making while on the road.

Firstly, the most obvious reason for an accident, is reckless and irresponsible driving.

This includes everything from a failure to look properly or check mirrors, failure to give way to oncoming traffic or at a junction, inattention or distraction, loss of control of the vehicle or driving at an inappropriate speed.

Staff are usually very aware of their responsibilities, and take extreme care when driving pupils, but still, accidents happen.

So as a school, it’s very important to ensure that every single minibus driver lives up to your expectations.

Your minibus driver should:

  •  Have the appropriate driving licence proving they are entitled to drive the minibus, and have taken part in practical driver training in a minibus, under the conditions they will be driving the minibus in.
  • Have taken part in initial assessments of ability to drive a minibus, and must be periodically assessed on their safety. This is even more important if they do not regularly drive a minibus, or have not done so for a long amount of time.
  • If any concern about their driving is raised, they must undergo a reassessment. This includes any motoring offence, receiving a fixed penalty or just being involved in a blameworthy collision.
  •  Understand their responsibilities. They must be fully aware that they have lives in their hands in order to ensure their full concentration on the road.
  •  Have a clean driving licence, this is at the discretion of the school, but clearly it is best that they have a clean licence.
  • Be medically fit to drive.
  • Check that their eyesight is adequate and undertake an eyesight test every 2 years.
  • Take rest breaks every two hours on long journeys, and always be well rested before driving anywhere.
  •  Where necessary, it is important to be accompanied by a second driver who is also fully qualified and meets the same conditions as the first driver.
  • Have a passenger assistant to accompany them where possible.
  •  Always carry their drivers licence with them