Houston school bus drivers call for seat belt reform

Houston school bus drivers with the union are calling for reform with state laws after Tuesday's deadly crash. They want seat belts on every bus which they say could have played a big part in saving the lives of those two children.

Two days after the deadly crash which still has 17 year old twins Brandon and Lakeisha Williams in intensive care, union drivers say it appears only one of the four children was wearing a seat belt.  Something they say should be mandatory for transporting precious cargo.

"I assure my parents when I pick up my babies they are yours by birth but they once they board my bus they are my babies," Veteran School Bus Driver Cynthia Cormier said.

That's why drivers say the law needs to change. They say all buses should have seat belts like the ones in cars. The union says HISD has less than a quarter of buses with seat belts when you exclude buses for special needs.

"I remember that years ago the auto racing industry was considered one of the most dangerous professions there is and that's no longer true because we made race cars safer. I think we can make our buses just as safe," Harris County AFL-CIO's Richard Shaw said.

Once all buses get seat belts drivers say the districts need to work with parents.

"HISD get with the parents and let the parents know when they get on the bus put the seatbelt on like you do in your momma car," HESP Union Spokesperson Wretha Thomas said.

They say another way to enforce seat belt safety is to use the surveillance cameras on buses so drivers can monitor exactly who is buckled in.
 

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