State Patrol conducts safety inspections on school buses

MEQUON -- Parents trust school buses to get kids to school safely every day. The Wisconsin State Patrol says they're one of the safest modes of transportation for children, but before the school year begins, the State Patrol is busy making sure buses are in tip top shape.

Inspector Bradley Ocaine with the Wisconsin State Patrol is busy inspecting school buses prior to opening day Tuesday, September 4th.

"We`ll do a complete inspection on the bus -- starting with the exterior of the vehicle with all of the lights, the warning lights, headlights, brake lights," Ocain said.

Inspectors will also examine the steering, brakes, electrical system and other required safety equipment.

Due to these consistent inspections, the National Highway Safety Administration says traveling by school bus is seven times safer than traveling by car or truck.

"The ultimate goal of the inspection program is to make sure the buses are safe as they can be to transport the most precious cargo out there -- our children," Ocain said.

The inspections are a year-round process, as the Wisconsin State Patrol examines more than 10,000 buses each year. They try to get most of the work done during the summer months. If the State Patrol finds any problems, the bus company is immediately notified.

"If it`s a serious violation, the bus will be placed out of service and will not be able to be used until the violation is corrected," Ocain said.

Each bus in the state is inspected at least once a year.

The Wisconsin State Patrol also conducts safety spot checks where random buses are chosen to be examined.