Lake Travis ISD equipping all school buses with seat belts

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Lake Travis Independent School District is taking steps to make sure its students get to and from the classroom safely. That means all students will be buckling up on the big yellow bus. 

“You click, tug and snug,” director of transportation with LTISD Rhonda Davis explain that’s the rhyme Lake Travis students will be repeating when school starts back up in August.

“It’s just to increase our students safety we think that’s the first and foremost of what we do. We transport precious cargo,” says Davis.

Old school buses don’t have seat belts on them, so starting next week, the district will be installing three-point seat belts to each of the seats on all of their old school buses.

Lake Travis voters approved close to $10 million in bond money to not only add the seat belts, but also purchase nearly 50 new school buses with seat belts already equipped. About half of the Lake Travis student body take the school bus.

Davis says parents are excited about the changes. “They feel like that their children are already getting into their own vehicles, and they know when they get in the vehicles that the first thing they do is put on that seat belt.” 

Installing seat belts on the old buses will take most of the summer to complete. The goal is to have all school buses ready by the start of the 2018-19 school year. 

The district is also looking for school bus drivers to help fill their shortage. They say they need to hire another 15-20 drivers before school starts this fall. 

Lake Travis ISD Stats

  • Over the past 10 years (2007-2017) student enrollment has increased by 76 percent, from 5,854 to 10,387
  • Over the next 10 years (20017-2027), Lake Travis demographer projects enrollment will increase by another 61 percent, to approximately 15,800
  • From school year 2015-2016 to 2016-2017, student ridership increased by 13 percent
  • From school year 2016-2017 to 2017-2018, student ridership increased by 10 percent
  • Current school year 2017-2018, approximately 4,800 students ride the bus to and from school each day – a ridership of approximately 46 percent of all students
  • Number of routes in current school year are 72, expanding to 75 routes for 2018-2019 school year

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