The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is endorsing three-point seat belts on school buses for the first time. In the past, NHTSA has suggested that retrofitting school buses with seat belts was a costly proposition and that buses, sans seat belts, were safe, NBC News reported.
"The position of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is that seat belts save lives," said NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind in an interview Sunday. "That is true whether in a passenger car or in a big yellow bus. And saving lives is what we are about. So NHTSA's policy is that every child on every school bus should have a three-point seat belt."
Rosekind also acknowledged this initial step in the rulemaking process could prove challenging and anticipated some pushback.
The National Association for Pupil Transportation, a school bus industry group, responded that such decisions should be left to cities and states, not federal regulators.