Local MSP welcomes school bus safety announcement

Stewart Stevenson MSP.
Stewart Stevenson MSP.

Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has welcomed the Scottish Government’s announcement that seatbelts will be provided on all dedicated school transport across Scotland.

Seatbelts on school transport will be be introduced in a phased roll out so that local authorities and bus operators have time to adapt to the change.

Commenting, Mr Stevenson said: “I very much welcome this development which will mean that Scotland’s children are safer when travelling to and from school. Everything practical should be done to ensure that our youngsters are protected, and in the event of an accident, we must make sure that measures have been taken to minimise risk.

“The Scottish Government has duties in respect of road safety to children and parents, and I am delighted that approval has been given ‘in principle’ by the UK Government to transfer powers relating to school bus safety.

“I would also pay tribute to the work done to move this issue forward by Gardenstown man Ron Beaty, who has been tenacious in his pursuit of improved safety measures for school buses.”

Transport Minister Keith Brown said: “I am pleased to announce the Scottish Government’s intention to legislate to ensure that seatbelts are provided for children to use whilst travelling to and from school on dedicated school transport.

“We have made this announcement to give local authorities and bus operators time to prepare for the change and I look forward to further discussions with CoSLA next month to review the full detail of these plans and consider the financial implications.

“The Scottish Government and its road safety partners are committed to the outcome of safer road travel in Scotland for everyone. It is imperative that we do everything we can to protect Scotland’s children, ensuring they are as safe as possible as they travel to and from school,” he added.