The Florida Highway Patrol is investigating after a boy was seriously injured jumping from the back of a moving school bus Tuesday afternoon near the corner of University Boulevard and Cruz Road. Troopers say the Durham School Services bus was transporting about eight children with developmental disabilities when a young boy unbuckled himself, got out of his seat, opened the emergency exit at the back of the bus and jumped. The bus was traveling about 15 to 20 mph when it happened. An emergency tone went off when the boy opened the door, getting the attention of the bus driver and an attendant. Before the bus could stop, however, the boy opened the door and either fell or jumped to the ground where his head hit the pavement. He was taken to Shands Jacksonville hospital with life-threatening injuries
School systems are responsible for ensuring that children with special needs are safely transported on all forms of federally approved transportation provided by the school system, and a plan should be developed to provide the most current and proper support to children with special transportation requirements. I expect and assume that FHP is investigating whether or not Durham School Services and Duval County School Board was compliant with Federal standards and regulations implemented to insure the safety of children with special needs during the transportation process. As recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics, there are important considerations that needs to be done when transporting special needs children which include the following:
My thoughts and prayers go out to the boy who is at Shands Jacksonville.
As always, stay safe and stay aware.