Operating Procedure: HS-4-005 – Accident/Incident Procedures (Refer to Forms TF023, TF023A)

 Preamble

In the event that a school bus or taxi under contract with HSTS is involved in an accident or incident, a series of communications and actions must take place, depending on the seriousness of the accident or incident. Our first and foremost priority is the students’ well-being.

Levels

Level of Emergency

Level 1      Serious injury sustained by a student.
Level 2      Non-serious injury sustained by a student.
Level 3      Emergency causing a lengthy delay and/or requiring a change of bus/taxi.
Level     Emergency causing a delay in bus/taxi travel time.

Responsibilities

Emergency Level 1 and 2

Serious and Non serious injury sustained by student

The Bus/Taxi Driver shall:

1. verify the passengers’ condition;
2. ensure that all passengers are safe;
3. contact dispatch to report the accident/incident (time, location, etc.);
4. request that police and emergency services be dispatched to the scene;
5. assist any injured student until the arrival of the emergency services, without moving him/her, unless it is absolutely necessary;
6. if tending to an injured student(s), ask a responsible student on the vehicle to keep the other students together, in a safe location, until the arrival of emergency services;
7. obtain a list of all students who were on the vehicle at the time of the accident/ incident and if possible, where they were seated;
8. inform dispatch when the uninjured students are on the way to school; and
9. keep the uninjured students on the vehicle until a staff member comes out to escort the students into the school.
10.In the event the bus driver is injured, Halton Regional Police Services will designate a Victim Liaison Officer who will inform the Principal(s) of the affected school(s) whose students were on the bus at the time of the accident and provide  an injury status update to the extent possible.

School Bus/Taxi Operator shall:

1. contact police and emergency services;
2. immediately inform HSTS staff and the school(s);
3. if deemed necessary, dispatch a person in charge of safety to the scene in order to take photographs and record details pertaining to the accident/ incident;
4. dispatch a replacement vehicle, if needed;
5. inform HSTS when students have been released from the scene and provide updates to HSTS;
6. once the uninjured students are on the way to school, contact the school to have a staff member meet the vehicle to escort the students into the school; and
7. submit the completed accident/incident report form to HSTS within 24 hours following the accident or incident.

HSTS Staff shall:

1. record all the pertinent information on the Accident/Incident Log form;
2. inform the Principal of the school;
3. inform the Superintendent responsible for the school;
4. inform the HSTS Operations Committee;
5. keep a telephone line free for communication;
6. direct the parents’ and guardians’ phone calls to the school principal;
7. not release the names of the injured students; based on the severity of the accident, the General Manager or designate may proceed to the accident;
8. direct phone calls/inquiries from the media to the Communications Department of the member board or the General Manager of HSTS; and
9. remain in the office until directed by a Manager or appropriate Administrative team member that they can leave.

School Principal (or designate) shall:

1. follow School Board Procedure/Protocol in the event of an accident/incident;
2. proceed to the scene or delegate a staff member to go to the scene and/or the hospital, to accompany injured student, if possible;
3. provide periodic updates to HSTS;
4. inform the parents/guardians of the students who were on the bus of the accident;
5. designate staff members to meet with and/or respond to questions from the parents/guardians;
6. if required, set aside a section of the school for the reception of parents (auditorium, staff room);
7. have a staff member available to escort the uninjured students into the school when the vehicle arrives;
8. advise teachers of students involved in the accident/incident to monitor students;
9. advise students that should they start to notice any aches or pains, they should report this to their teacher immediately;
10. distribute follow up communication to parents/guardians, if required; and,
11. provide monitoring and offer Board supports as required for the students post-incident.

Responsibilities

Emergency Level 3 and 4

A Delay or a Lengthy Delay Resulting in a Change in Bus/Taxi

The Bus/Taxi Driver shall:

1. verify the passengers’ condition;
2. ensure that all passengers are safe;
3. contact dispatch to report the accident/incident (time, location etc.);
4. request that police be dispatched to the scene and if necessary, emergency services;
5. request a new vehicle, if required;
6. obtain a list of all students who were on the vehicle at the time of the accident/incident and if possible, where they were seated;
7. inform dispatch when the students are on the way to school; and
8. keep the students on the vehicle until a staff member comes out to escort the students into the school.

The School Bus/Taxi Operator shall:

1. contact police and if necessary, emergency services;
2. immediately inform the school(s) and HSTS staff;
3. dispatch a replacement vehicle to the scene, if required;
4. provide updates to HSTS and inform HSTS when students have been released from the scene;
5. contact the school to request a staff member meet the vehicle to escort the students into the school; and
6. submit the completed accident/incident report form to HSTS within 24 hours following the accident or incident.

HSTS shall:

1. record all the pertinent information in Accident/Incident Log;
2. if required, assist in contacting the school;
3. keep in contact with the school/bus/taxi operator, providing periodic updates, if required; and
4. inform the Principal, the respective HSTS Operations Committee Member and Superintendent of Schools.

School Principal (or designate) shall:

1. follow School Board Procedure/Protocol in the event of an accident/incident;
2. attend the scene if accident occurs on school property;
3. have a staff member available to escort the students into the school when the vehicle arrives;
4. meet with the students to ascertain that there are no post-accident symptoms developing;
5. advise students that should they start to notice any aches or pains, they should report this to their teacher immediately;
6. advise teachers to monitor students involved in the accident/incident;
7. if deemed necessary, contact their Superintendent of Education; and
8. distribute follow up communication to parents/guardians, if required.

Accident Occurring after School Dismissal

In the event of an accident/incident occurring in the afternoon while transporting students home from school and the bus/taxi operator is unsuccessful in contacting anyone at the school, HSTS will contact the Superintendent of Schools responsible for the school involved who in turn will contact the Principal of the school. The Principal (or designate) will be notified and asked to contact the parents of the students on board and if there are student injuries, attend the scene, if required.

Accident with No Students on Board

In the event of a school bus accident involving a school bus that is not servicing an HSTS route, the bus operator shall inform HSTS of the accident, for information purposes only. This will include buses where the driver is travelling to the first bus stop on their route and travelling from the last bus stop on their route.

Revised: June 2019
Operating Procedure: HS-4-005 – Accident/Incident Procedures (Refer to Forms TF023, TF023A)