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Author Topic: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?  (Read 960 times)

mrhappy1261

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In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« on: July 27, 2019, 09:58:14 PM »

I'm just figuring out why this is the case. Because is it because of students? I get it because of seat belts, but 45 mph is too slow. Especially on freeways. They need to raise it to 55 mph or 60 mph! Don't know why this is the case.   :-/
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webny99

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2019, 10:27:34 PM »

Since your question is specific to North Carolina (or at least I assume so, because buses in New York can and do exceed 45 mph!) it probably fits best in the Southeast regional board.
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mrhappy1261

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2019, 10:37:16 PM »

Since your question is specific to North Carolina (or at least I assume so, because buses in New York can and do exceed 45 mph!) it probably fits best in the Southeast regional board.

So do I have to ask an administrator or moderator to move this thread to southeast?
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webny99

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2019, 10:38:31 PM »

They probably will do it automatically when they see it, but you can send one of them a PM (private message) if you wish.
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mrhappy1261

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2019, 10:41:55 PM »

They probably will do it automatically when they see it, but you can send one of them a PM (private message) if you wish.

Alright
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mrhappy1261

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2019, 11:20:59 AM »

So after the administrators and moderators were online and I'm sure they saw this thread, I think I'm going to carry on this thread and talk about why school buses only drive 45mph in North Carolina.

So I'm guessing it's because of no seatbelts or for safety reasons.
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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2019, 02:31:21 PM »

Activity buses can go 55 in N.C. 

Virginia and South Carolina allow 55 if the speed limit is 60 or more. Otherwise it is 45.

My vague recollection from my school days in SC (70s-80s) was that buses were limited to 35 mph.
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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2019, 03:02:47 PM »

It's the law, General Statutes Section 20-218(b): "It is unlawful to drive a school bus occupied by one or more child passengers over the highways or public vehicular areas of the State at a greater rate of speed than 45 miles per hour. It is unlawful to drive a school activity bus occupied by one or more child passengers over the highways or public vehicular areas of North Carolina at a greater rate of speed than 55 miles per hour."

Texas has a similar law, limiting the top speed of a school bus to 50, unless it's passed a commercial motor vehicle inspection, in which case it can go 60.  This is ignored all the time, as evidenced by buses keeping up with faster traffic.  School activity buses are allowed to drive at the speed limit.
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roadfro

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2019, 04:10:01 PM »

Nevada has a similar law:

Quote from: Nevada Revised Statutes
NRS 484B.360  Maximum speed of school bus.  A school bus shall not exceed:
1.  A speed of 55 miles per hour when transporting pupils to and from school; or
2.  The speed limit posted by a public authority for the portion of highway being traversed when transporting pupils to and from any activity which is properly a part of a school program.

So now maybe a better question: Why do school buses have different lawful maximum speeds when transporting kids to/from school versus to/from school activities? Transporting to/from school activities isn't inherently safer in any way, other than it's possible there will be fewer kids on the bus.
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sprjus4

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2019, 04:14:38 PM »

Virginia and South Carolina allow 55 if the speed limit is 60 or more. Otherwise it is 45.
South Carolina only allows 55 mph in a 60, 65, or 70 mph zone, though Virginia permits up to 60 mph in a 60, 65, or 70 mph zone.

Quote
The maximum speed limit for school buses shall be 45 miles per hour or the minimum speed allowable, whichever is greater, on any highway where the maximum speed limit is 55 miles per hour or less, and 60 miles per hour on all interstate highways and on other highways where the maximum speed limit is more than 55 miles per hour.
https://law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/title46.2/chapter8/section46.2-871/
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mrhappy1261

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2019, 07:21:22 PM »

Well, North Carolina is very strict on their school bus speed. And most people debate it should NOT be raised. They want it 45 mph. With any vehicle going 45 mph on a posted 70 mph is very dangerous. School buses did that before. They have to drive 45 mph no matter where they are even if they are on a freeway.
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vdeane

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #11 on: July 28, 2019, 08:38:02 PM »

Nevada has a similar law:

Quote from: Nevada Revised Statutes
NRS 484B.360  Maximum speed of school bus.  A school bus shall not exceed:
1.  A speed of 55 miles per hour when transporting pupils to and from school; or
2.  The speed limit posted by a public authority for the portion of highway being traversed when transporting pupils to and from any activity which is properly a part of a school program.

So now maybe a better question: Why do school buses have different lawful maximum speeds when transporting kids to/from school versus to/from school activities? Transporting to/from school activities isn't inherently safer in any way, other than it's possible there will be fewer kids on the bus.
Liability?  School is mandatory, but activities require permission slips and the like.
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sprjus4

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #12 on: July 28, 2019, 08:42:39 PM »

Well, North Carolina is very strict on their school bus speed. And most people debate it should NOT be raised. They want it 45 mph. With any vehicle going 45 mph on a posted 70 mph is very dangerous. School buses did that before. They have to drive 45 mph no matter where they are even if they are on a freeway.
I'd argue there should be something in place like in Virginia... 45 mph is the maximum speed limit, but if the speed limit is 60, 65, or 70 mph, the bus is allowed to speed it up to 60 mph. That's only 10 mph under the highest speed limit as opposed to 25 mph under.
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mrhappy1261

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #13 on: July 28, 2019, 09:08:59 PM »

Well, North Carolina is very strict on their school bus speed. And most people debate it should NOT be raised. They want it 45 mph. With any vehicle going 45 mph on a posted 70 mph is very dangerous. School buses did that before. They have to drive 45 mph no matter where they are even if they are on a freeway.
I'd argue there should be something in place like in Virginia... 45 mph is the maximum speed limit, but if the speed limit is 60, 65, or 70 mph, the bus is allowed to speed it up to 60 mph. That's only 10 mph under the highest speed limit as opposed to 25 mph under.

They are fine in my opinion. It's just North Carolina that has the school bus issues. They had plans to raise the governors to 55mph back in 2013, but I think the bill failed. They should try again I have a similar thread on City-Data about this

http://www.city-data.com/forum/coastal-north-carolina/2842063-school-buses-drive-too-slow.html
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mgk920

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #14 on: July 28, 2019, 10:16:55 PM »

Reason - lily-livers who think that the world will end if even a single child is propelled any faster.

 :rolleyes:

Mike
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mrhappy1261

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #15 on: July 28, 2019, 10:20:03 PM »

Reason - lily-livers who think that the world will end if even a single child is propelled any faster.

 :rolleyes:

Mike

One told me the faster it goes, the more time it takes to make an emergency stop if something happens and they don't want anything to happen if you look on City-Data, most people say they don't want it raised. They want to leave it where it is because one said "You have a bunch of kids without ANY protection from an impact".
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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #16 on: July 29, 2019, 04:48:37 AM »

Related question:  Are seat belts finally standard on school buses?  Granted I haven't been on one since about 1990, and at that time, there were still no seat belts.
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DrSmith

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #17 on: July 29, 2019, 06:58:31 AM »

At least in Connecticut I find school buses only doing 40-45 mph on the highways like I-91 in the  morning. And I don't know how going soooo slow is safer when traffic is doing 65-75 at least. Instead the buses create a bottle neck with a busy and fairly full 3-lane highway and results in all kinds of bad behavior as all the traffic tries to pass in the 2 left lanes making it more dangerous for everyone.
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Rothman

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #18 on: July 29, 2019, 07:39:18 AM »

Related question:  Are seat belts finally standard on school buses?  Granted I haven't been on one since about 1990, and at that time, there were still no seat belts.
Not everywhere.
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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #19 on: July 29, 2019, 07:47:56 AM »

These types of laws, once enacted, are hard to change.

And the laws, as shown above, are ridiculous.  If a kid was going to school in a bus going 50 mph, or going on a field trip going 50 mph, the forces caused by an accident aren't going to change.  So why are two limits allowed, simply based on the reason why a kid is in a bus?  There can't be any realistic reasoning if it's supposedly about the kids safety.

Related question:  Are seat belts finally standard on school buses?  Granted I haven't been on one since about 1990, and at that time, there were still no seat belts.
Not everywhere.

New Jersey I believe was one of the first to require seatbelts, and recently have updated the law to require 3 point harness seatbelts.

Generally speaking, younger kids wear them.  Older kids don't.
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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #20 on: July 29, 2019, 07:49:28 AM »

I seem to remember it being 40 in MA.
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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #21 on: July 29, 2019, 12:19:09 PM »

I seem to remember it being 40 in MA.

Yes, 40 mph max - except when traveling on a limited-access highway, per MGL Chapter 90, Sec. 17.
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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #22 on: July 29, 2019, 02:25:18 PM »

I recall that seat belts haven't been installed in school buses because it's actually safer without them.  Every seat is padding and, in the case of a rollover or whatever, that would be a lot of seat belts that might need to be cut.
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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #23 on: July 29, 2019, 02:27:03 PM »

Related question:  Are seat belts finally standard on school buses?  Granted I haven't been on one since about 1990, and at that time, there were still no seat belts.
Not everywhere.

When I was in school, I would have been scared witless to ride in a bus with them - the bullies would not have hesitated to use them as weapons against me.

 :no:

Mike
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Brandon

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Re: In North Carolina, why do school buses drive 45 mph?
« Reply #24 on: July 29, 2019, 02:50:40 PM »

I recall that seat belts haven't been installed in school buses because it's actually safer without them.  Every seat is padding and, in the case of a rollover or whatever, that would be a lot of seat belts that might need to be cut.

Which is one of the biggest bunches of baloney I've seen.  There's a video of a bus going out of control due to an incapacitated driver out there, and due to the lack of seat belts, one of the kids hits the ceiling of the bus.
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