The Ontario School Bus Association (OSBA) is a non-profit association providing advocacy, education and legislative consultation services to the owners of school bus fleets, school boards/transportation consortia and supplier/manufacturer companies across Ontario.  
August 19, 2015 - Issue 17

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Inside this Edition:
  1. Wi-Fi Coming To Miami Dade School Buses
  2. School Start-Up - Order Your OSBA Publications Now!
  3. Red Light Cameras On New Jersey School Buses?
  4. REMINDER - PMVI Inspection Standards for Annual and Semi-Annual Inspections Took Effect January 1, 2015
  5. Wake County Schools Hope Change To Bus Stop Procedures Increases Safety
  6. Mark Your Calendar - 2016 P.R.I.D.E. Program Dates
  7. School Bus Safety Week - October 19-23, 2015
  8. Electric Bus Market Report for 2015 Just Published
  9. Last Chance To Be Part of School Bus Ontario Annual Magazine!
  10. October P.R.I.D.E. Program Almost Sold Out
  11. School Bus Safety Brochures Now Available!
  12. Upcoming Events
Wi-Fi Coming To Miami Dade School Buses

Article By: Miami New Times
Date: August 17, 2015

It appears that Miami-Dade County Public Schools are taking a step into the future this school year that makes perfect sense and yet will make anyone over the age of 25 feel hopelessly old.  It's adding Wi-Fi to school buses. 

As one of the largest school districts in the country, Miami-Dade also has one of the largest school bus systems in the world, and today drivers were out for a practice run of their new routes ahead of the start of school next week. Superintendent Alberto Carvalho took the opportunity to publicize the system's new features, the shiniest of which is the Wi-Fi-on-the-Go program, which puts mobile hotspots on buses. 

Naturally, the program comes with filters that keep kids off inappropriate sites as well as limits the time they can spend on social media sites.  The idea is that kids can use the Wi-Fi to get a jumpstart on their homework (or catch up last minute). 

Wi-Fi on school buses has been slowly catching on in the past five years, with the
 New York Times first profiling a district in Arizona that equipped a bus with a long commute time back in 2010.  Many districts find that the introduction of Wi-Fi on buses also leads to fewer behavioral problems. 

School buses will now also feature GPS tracking so parents and students can track their route, which is more than we can say for the Metrobus routes.  The district is also experimenting with "flex stops" to accommodate magnet school students traveling to school farther from home.  The idea is that students will get on one bus, be dropped off at another school or park, and then connect with another bus.
School Start-Up - Order Your OSBA Publications Now!


With September just around the corner, now is the time to order your OSBA publications. Visit the OSBA website at and click on the "STORE" tab from the home page. You will then be able to select from the various publication options.  Or click on the links below and go directly to the correct order form: Once you have completed the necessary order form, scan/email your order to or fax to 416-695-9977. 
Red Light Cameras On New Jersey School Buses?

Article By: New Jersey 101.5
Date: July 19, 2015

At the end of last year, New Jersey’s
 red light camera pilot program was disbanded, but now legislators are considering a plan to bring the cameras back — and mount them on school buses.

The Garden State’s foremost anti-red light camera crusader thinks this is a horrible idea, because it would not really target drivers who blow by school buses that are stopped and have their red lights flashing.
 Declan O’Scanlon (R-Red Bank) said at first blush this might seem like a no-brainer, because everyone wants to protect their kids, “but we need to remember the only way that equipment can pay for itself is if they have dramatically high fines, and they go after people making simple but not hazardous mistakes.”
He said in some situations, like when a grass median separates a stopped school bus and a car, the driver of the car is required to be cautious but not necessarily stop, and is allowed to travel no more than 10 mph, only stopping when necessary.
“It is those people that would be targeted, even though they may use common sense, proceed with caution,” O’Scanlon said.  “In that scenario, Redflex (a leading red light camera company) would target them because there’s room for confusion.”
O’Scanlon fears that red light camera companies will issue tickets by the thousands, for hundreds of dollars each, with points for certain technical, non-hazardous situations.

“We don’t need a profit-making company, whose goal isn’t safety, to get involved,” he said.  “If we allow this, people will be slamming on their brakes, they’ll be coming to a stop, being rear-ended.  It will not improve safety for our children.  Once you invite a profit-making company into law enforcement, it is ripe for abuse.”
Legislation has been introduced to permit these cameras, but the measures have not advanced in the Assembly.
REMINDER - PMVI Inspection Standards for Annual and Semi-Annual Inspections Took Effect January 1, 2015

Members are reminded that MTO has adopted the CCMTA National Safety Code Standard 11B – Version 2014 to replace the previous 2006 version of the standard.  Highway Traffic Act (HTA) Regulation 611 was amended to adopt Version 2014 effective January 1, 2015.  The standard can be found at: The new standard eliminates much ambiguity and includes more precise, measurable (objective) criteria for leaks, extent of play/tolerances, etc.  Regulation 611 will continue to exempt buses, school purposes vehicles and accessible vehicles from the 6 month internal brake component inspection.  MTO advises that there will be “soft enforcement” until January 1, 2016.
New PMVI inspection forms are now available for purchase through OSBA for:
A new PMVI Technician Guidebook (called Practical Safety Inspections) is also available for sale through OSBA for just $19.95 (members) and $24.95 (non-members). The guidebook is a MUST for any technician inspecting buses and issuing safety stickers.  This colour illustrated 184-page guidebook provides a comprehensive explanation of the PMVI standard.  It provides a detailed description of how each component or system is to be inspected and what constitutes a “pass” or “reject” condition.  The book also includes the National Safety Code Standard 11B, reproduced with the consent of CCMTA.  Technicians doing PMVI annual and semi-annual bus inspections and SSCs will find this authoritative, simple to use guidebook an invaluable resource for ensuring inspections are done consistently and in accordance with the regulations.
Wake County Schools Hope Change To Bus Stop Procedures Increases Safety

Article By: Sloane Heffernan
Date: August 17, 2015

The Wake County Public School System will implement a new school bus boarding procedure designed to keep students safe when traditional-calendar schools open next week for the 2015-16 school year.

The change could add some time to the morning commute for buses and other vehicles by slowing the boarding process to avoid incidents when children have been injured by vehicles approaching stopped buses, officials said.

Previously, a bus' flashing lights, stop arm and crossing guard arm would all activate, automatically, at the same time.

"That didn't give traffic a chance to really stop," bus driver Rosemarie Strother said Monday. "The kids, as soon as they saw the red lights come on, they are booking across the street to come and get on the bus."

The new system will allow Strother and other drivers to manually operate the safety devices once they determine it's safe for students to step off the curb at bus stops.

The State Department of Public Instruction paid about $337,000 to retrofit some 900 Wake County school buses with the switch needed to manually operated the safety devices.

"You never know when someone is not paying attention driving, and they're just going to come zooming by," Strother said.

Several such accidents occurred last year, and a Wendell boy was killed in one.

District transportation officials provided schools and PTAs with resources to teach students the new process for boarding the bus. The new rule: Wait for the crossing bar guard to open fully, check traffic left and right and then walk to the bus.

Students said they are ready for the change.

"I used to feel like it wasn't that safe because I would almost get hit by a car sometimes because some cars would really speed by our bus stop," said Mia Nesbeth Flynn, a student at Carpenter Elementary School.

"The cars have longer time to slow down, and the kids have more time to look both ways," said Sebastian Mentler, a Carpenter Elementary student.
Mark Your Calendar - 2016 P.R.I.D.E. Program Dates

With the last Professional Instructor in Driver Education (P.R.I.D.E.) Program of 2015 just around the corner Oct. 18-23, you may wish to mark your calendar with the 2016 dates.  For 26 years, the P.R.I.D.E. Program has been providing fleet driver instructors with powerful non-lecture training techniques and philosophies.  Here’s what a few of the 2014 graduates said:

  • “Well run from start to finish.  I came in not knowing what to expect and am taking home tools, skills, confidence, feedback and support that I will use for the rest of my life.  Excellent program!”  Terry Lucas, First Student – Ajax
  • “LOVED IT!  Interactive, educational, FUN, FUN, FUN.  It made my week of being away from family for the first time in 13 years the best experience ever.  Fantastic!  Kim Clark, Robert Hogan Bus Lines
  • “My overall impression of the program is that it is extremely well organized and presented.  The trainers are all exceptional and the material presented is incredibly relevant and pertinent to any training program.”  Tristan Green, OC Transpo (Ottawa) 
2016 Dates:
  • January 10-15
  • March 13-18
  • May 1-6
  • July 10-15
  • August 7-12
  • October 16-21 

For more information - please visit or contact

School Bus Safety Week - October 19-23, 2015

As you may be aware, School Bus Safety Week (SBSW) is Oct. 19-23, 2015 as noted on the National Association for Pupil Transportation (NAPT) website at:  We understand that School Bus Driver Appreciation Day is usually held mid-week e.g. Wed. Oct. 21, 2015.  As well, the Canada Safety Council has designated Oct. 17-23, 2015 as National School Safety Week:
School Bus Safety Week is an excellent opportunity for the industry to emphasize and promote the many significant initiatives that service providers, schools, school boards and transportation consortia undertake to ensure the safety and viability of student transportation and to support professional school bus drivers in the tremendous responsibility they accept for keeping children safe.  Reach out in your community and remind motorists about the importance and reliability of this essential service, and to keep an eye out for children returning to school at the beginning of September.
OSBA would appreciate hearing of any activities that organizations may be conducting or involved with during SBSW or on School Bus Driver Appreciation Day. We’d like to recognize and highlight your activities in the newsletter and potentially on the OSBA website.  Please send an email to or fax to 416.695.9977 or call 416.695.9965 ext. 6.  We’d be happy to chat and take down a few notes of your wonderful initiatives!

Electric Bus Market Report for 2015 Just Published

Excerpt from Article By: WhaTech
Date: August 17, 2015

The Electric Bus market and its development from 2015 to 2020 is charted and analyzed in a new research report, titled “Electric Bus Market Research 2015.”  The report provides comprehensive details about aspects of the market such as its current and historical trends, major drivers and restraints, major market players, and economical factors affecting the market’s growth.
All of these factors are analyzed separately and in conjunction with each other in the report in order to provide a 360-degree view of the Electric Bus market.  The detailed analysis makes the report a must-have for all established and prospective players in this market.
Browse complete report:
The following items are examined in the report:

  1. Major drivers and restraints affecting the trajectory of the Electric Bus market.
  2. Timeline of the impact of both positive and negative factors on the Electric Bus including an impact analysis of the major drivers and restraints presented for the historical review period and the forecast period between 2015 and 2020.
  3. Qualitative and quantitative analysis of the positive and negative factors.
  4. Comparative analysis of major Electric Bus market players providing an understanding of the Electric Bus market’s competitive landscape.
  5. Financial and business profiles of the major Electric Bus market players and their latest developments in the market.

To get a sample copy of report visit:  @

Last Chance To Be Part of "School Bus Ontario" Annual Magazine!

Deadline to Advertise: August 26, 2015

Ensure your message reaches key decision-makers before it's too late! OSBA's annual magazine lets you place your message in front of more than 6,000 decision-makers involved in Ontario's primary and secondary school systems, including school bus service providers, school boards, transportation consortia, directors of education, transportation officers, suppliers, manufacturers and more. Bonus distribution at the Ontario Transportation Expo!

Why Advertise?

  • By advertising you are reaching 34 transportation consortia and more than 50 school bus service providers who collectively operate 11,000 school buses in Ontario.
  • By participating you are growing your brand in front of school boards, transportation consortia and service providers in a province that will spend more than $887 million on student transportation.
  • OSBA is the authoritative voice on student transportation in Ontario and our members ensure more than 833,000 children are transported to school safely every day.

Time is running out! Participate today! For more information, click here or contact Joshua Frey-Sam at (204) 975-0451, or  

October P.R.I.D.E. Program Almost Sold Out!

There are only 3 spaces left in the October 18–23, 2015 program.   Don’t be disappointed – complete and email your registration form today!

If you have training requirements before or after October, please email your preferred dates to  If 12 spaces are filled, efforts will be made to schedule an additional program.

The link to the 2015 P.R.I.D.E. Program brochure including the registration form is:


School Bus Safety Brochures Now Available!


OSBA has received a quantity of "School Bus Safety Rules" brochures as well as "STOP School Bus" brochures. The brochures are free of charge and are available though OSBA and Service Ontario. If you are interested in receiving some brochures from OSBA, please contact us at

If you would like to place a larger order of brochures, please call Service Ontario at 416-326-5300 or 1-800-668-9938.
Upcoming Events

Copyright © 2015 Ontario School Bus Association
All rights reserved.  This publication is intended for the exclusive use of OSBA Members.  Reproduction without prior permission is prohibited.

Contact OSBA:
3401 Wolfedale Road, Mississauga, ON, L5C 1V8
Tel.416.695.9965 Fax 416.695.9977 |
Please address all enquiries and submissions to  Opinions expressed do not necessarily express the opinions of the OSBA or its Board of Directors. Nor does acceptance of advertising constitute endorsement.