DFPS licensing standards and using these vehicles in child/day care

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1 Issues and Answers

2 Vans and buses aren t always compatible with child restraint systems How to do it safely and in compliance with the law? DFPS licensing standards and using these vehicles in child/day care How does the law differ from licensing standards of operation for transportation?

3 Texas Law Definitions DFPS Transportation Standards

4 requires all children younger than 8 years old, unless taller than 4 9, to be in the appropriate child safety seat system (installed according to the manufacturer s instructions) anywhere they sit in a passenger vehicle A child younger than 8 years old, but already taller than 4 9, is allowed to use the adult safety belt by itself

5 Passenger vehicle: a passenger car, truck, light truck, truck tractor, sport utility vehicle, passenger van Passenger car: a vehicle designed to transport not more than 10 occupants including the driver Passenger van: a van designed to transport not more than 15 occupants including the driver

6 Bus: a motor vehicle used to transport persons and designed to accommodate more than 10 occupants, including the driver School bus: a bus that meets all federal standards/requirements in effect on the date of manufacture and used to transport children to and from school and/or on school-related activity trips

7 Multi-function school activity bus (MFSAB): a bus built like a school bus, but not required to have the flashing red light or stop arms/signs and cannot take children to/from school and home, in Texas cannot be painted school bus yellow

8 Child passenger safety seat system: an infant or child passenger restraint system that meets the federal standards for crash-tested restraint systems as set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), examples: Infant, rear-facing only seat Convertible seats (rear and forward) Forward-facing only seats (with harnesses) Booster seats (no harness, high back and backless) Safety vests/harness systems

9 New standards were adopted Dec 2010 See handout for rule requirements Restraint system required is based on Child s age/weight/height Vehicle being used for transport

10 Know the vehicle Van or bus? Seat belts? Lap only or lap/shoulder and location of each Know the students Age/height/weight? Know the safety seat options Car seats, booster seats? Vests/safety harness? Bus specific systems?

11 Designed for higher capacity Loaded with heavy cargo Higher center of gravity Long, narrow wheel base

12

13 School buses are statistically the safest form of transportation on roads today

14 Large or small bus? 10,000 lbs more or less? Bench or bucket seats? No belts Lap only belts Lap/shoulder belts Seat belts required by federal law on small bus (10,000 lbs and less)

15 Do you know the age, height and weight of each child in the vehicle? They GROW make sure you have updated information each semester.

16

17 A rose by any other name would smell as sweet William Shakespeare Car seat Baby carrier Chair Booster chair Child restraint system ALL are words used by various people to mean: Child Safety Seat System

18 Two types: high back and backless Use high back when no head restraint on vehicle seat (such as passenger vans or trucks) Weight limits vary: usually for kids pounds read the manual carefully Make sure booster allows proper fit of belt Must always use with lap/shoulder belt, BUT NEVER use on a bus!

19 Safety vests may also be used instead of safety seats or booster seats Child must meet age, height, weight requirement set by manufacturer DO NOT use with a booster MUST have a tether anchor for shoulders Different products for buses vs. passenger vehicles

20 5-point add on seat lbs STAR lbs STAR Plus Child must be older than 1 year of age Up to 57

21 Step 1: Know the vehicle/seat belt type Step 2: Know the kids age/height/weight Step 3: Know the safety seat options Step 4: Know the licensing standards for transportation

22 Seating assignments: Kids 8 years and older sit in the lap-only belts Kids 7 years and younger AND who are less than 4 9 must use the appropriate safety seat or safety vests/harness system designed for passenger vehicles ALL systems must be installed and used according to their manufacturer s instructions

23 Option 1: Use high-weight harnessed safety seats Option 2: Use safety vests/harnesses BUT tether anchors must be installed Option 3: Can shoulder belts be retro-fitted for booster seat use?

24 Follow DFPS licensing standards for proper transportation of the children Younger than 12 months (any weight): properly installed rear-facing safety seat can be either an infant-only or a rear-facing convertible seat 12 months through 3 years old AND more than 20 pounds: properly installed rear- or forward-facing safety seat OR a safety vest/harness for buses used and installed according to manufacturer s instructions

25

26 Beth Warren Texas DPS 5805 N Lamar Blvd Bldg C Austin TX

TYPE OF TRANSPORTATION. PASSENGER VEHICLE (10 passengers or fewer) PASSENGER VAN MFSAB SCHOOL BUS. Center to School.

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