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Study: drivers stop too close to school buses.

Nearly half of all drivers underestimate how far away they should stay back from a school bus stopped with flashing lights, according to a study by GMAC Insurance.

The study, which polled 5,175 licensed Americans from all 50 states and the District of Columbia on proper roadway safety procedures involving school buses, found that 47% underestimated the recommended distance a car should stop (rule of thumb: at least 20 feet, or one-and-a-half car lengths),

However, the study found that 93% knew that when approaching a stopped school bus with flashing red lights, drivers must stop.

As about 25 million students head back to school this fall, an average of 500,000 school buses will be on the roads, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association.

While buses are statistically one of the safest modes of transportation, more than twice as many children are killed while getting on or off school buses than while riding in them, NHTSB reported.

"Unfortunately, many drivers still speed through school zones and pass school buses when they're not supposed to," Gary Kusumi, chief executive officer and president of GMAC Insurance, said in a statement. "The potential consequences of these dangerous behaviors are too great to ignore."


Society of Actuaries Unveils 'Enterprise Risk Analyst' Credential

The Society of Actuaries has introduced its first new professional credential in nearly 60 years: Chartered Enterprise Risk Analyst. The CERA is earned by professionals who complete a rigorous curriculum,

CERAs are qualified for risk-manager leadership positions in all types of organizations, including insurance, benefits, financial services and the energy, manufacturing, transportation and health-care industries.

To earn this international credential, CERA candidates must successfully complete five exams, an educational module and a professionalism course. Subjects include probability, finance, economics, construction of actuarial models, risk management and operational risk.

Back-to-School Safety Tips


* Stay stopped. When a school bus stops and displays its red flashing lights, come to a stop until the lights are no longer flashing or until signaled to proceed by the bus driver or a police officer.

* Keep back. The recommended distance at which drivers following a school bus should stop is at least 20 feet (one-and-a-half car lengths).

* Don't pass. It is illegal to pass on the right side of the bus, where children are loading and unloading.

* Be attentive. Children may run out into the street.

* Go slow. Obey the posted speed limits in school zones where children are often walking or playing.

Parents and Children:

* See and be seen. Children should stay 10 feet away from the school bus and never go behind it.

* Stay on the sidewalk. Make sure children stay somewhere safe, like on the sidewalk or in the driveway, while waiting.

* Look before you leap. Teach your child how to cross the street safely.

Source: GMAC Insurance

Loss/Risk Management Notes is compiled by Senior Associate Editor Meg Green.
COPYRIGHT 2007 A.M. Best Company, Inc.
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Title Annotation:Loss/Risk Management Insight: Property/Casualty
Author:Green, Meg
Publication:Best's Review
Date:Sep 1, 2007
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