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Apr 12, 2018
Business Reentry and Resumption Report
Table of ContentsPreface1Acknowledgements2Our Risk Management Strategy3Information Security3Vehicle Checking4Communication Protocols5Emergency Communications Plan5Emergency Communications6Reporting Suspicious People and Vehicles6Reporting Suspicious People6Identifying and Reporting Suspicious Vehicles7The Decision Point8Recognition of Threats or an Attack in Progress8Warning Indicators9Bus Evacuation Protocols9Responses to Threats10Safe Houses and Knowing your routes14Knowing Your Routes15Conducting Drills15Students with Special Needs and Disabilities15Keep Calm and Carry On16Summary16
Public transportation plays an important role in the educational process, transporting children to and from school each day. The role requires maturity, diligence, professionalism, determination, stamina, good physical health, and skill. In the wake of community tragedies that can occur, either from natural disasters, accidents or through criminal or terrorist targeting, Virginia School bus drivers and bus monitors are increasingly part of the front line team who protect our children from a range of risks on a day to day basis.
(School Bus Drivers and Monitors play an important role in protecting our students)Bus drivers and bus monitors should understand that the lives of the children under their care depend on their knowledge, skill, alertness and judgement. Although unlikely, bus drivers and bus monitors may need to deal with critical incidents, these being situations which present a physical threat to students and requires an immediate response.
Knowledge and preparation is the foundation for effective safety, security and emergency management. By understanding the many threats we face within todays dynamic world, and by identifying our responses to such threats, we will be better placed to avoid, identify and respond to manmade and natural threats, managing the ALL HAZARDS approach to student safety and security, effectively, and with confidence.
(Threats may include natural hazards ort manmade threats such as:FloodingStormsEarthquakes CrimeCivil disorderLone or active shootersTerrorism)While these threats are very unlikely to occur, our role as a bus driver or bus monitor is not only a function of moving students from the place of embarkation to a drop off point, but also to ensure the protection of their physical and psychological wellbeing at all times. Where bus monitors are not present, then the driver will have additional responsibilities in identifying and responding to threats.
The objective of this manual is to raise the awareness and competency of bus drivers and monitors by:
Developing an understanding the principles of risk management;
Gaining an appreciation of information security;
Developing strong and effective communications strategy;
Being able to identify, and report, suspicious people and vehicles;
Recognizing and responding to an attack in progress;
Being able to quickly and safely evacuate the bus;
Having the knowledge and skills to respond to manmade and natural threats;
Understanding what a safe house is, and how to use it; and
Assisting students with special needs.
Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services
Virginia Center for School and Campus Safety
1100 Bank Street
Richmond, VA 23219
Risk and Strategic Management, Corp (RSM) of Herndon, Virginia, graciously donated the production of the video, School Bus Driver and Monitor Security Manual, which is an essential component of this training.
Please direct any questions about this manual to:
Donna Michaelis, Manager, Virginia Center for School and Campus Safety at 804-371-6506, [email protected]
Shellie MacKenzie, School and Campus Safety Program and Training Coordinator, Virginia Center for School and Campus Safety at 804-678-8993 or [email protected]
Our Risk Management Strategy
Our strategy to manage the risks faced by students during bus movements include the following principles:
Prevention: Having the capability to avoid, deter, or stop an incident. Prevention is the action schools, bus drivers and bus monitors take to prevent a threatened or actual incident from occurring, including through sound planning and education or awareness;
Protection: Being able to protect students against acts of violence and manmade or natural disasters. Protection focuses on ongoing actions that protect students, teachers, staff, visitors, networks, and property from a threat or hazard;
Mitigation: Are the actions taken which are necessary to eliminate or reduce the loss of life and property damage by lessening the impact of an event or emergency. Mitigation also means reducing the likelihood of threats and hazards occurring;
Response: Is the process by which we stabilize an emergency once it has already happened, or is certain to happen in an unpreventable way, and so establishes a safe and secure environment, saves lives and property; and facilitates the transition to recovery; and
Recovery: Focuses on the actions necessary to restore normal bus operations following an incident.
Training and conducting drills play a key role in operationalizing and sustaining our ability to manage risks, and so protect the students under our care.
Bus drivers and bus monitors are responsible for protecting information relating to these safety, security measures and response protocols, as well as any bus routes or planned field trips. Often hostile persons or groups will seek to gather information as part of their strategy for identifying soft or easy targets, and then plan an attack based on this information.
It is often discovered after a crisis event that these individuals or groups were able to access information which helped them to plan an attack more effectively, frequently assisted by people innocently sharing sensitive information with them. As such, you should adopt the following information security measures:
Do not share information related to this training with others outside of the school
No not discuss your role, or activities relating to your role, in public places
Do not post information on social media relating to your role
Do not post information on social media relating to bus routes or planned field trips
If you are asked unusual or probing questions by others report it!
Remember when in doubt call it out!
Remember, the lives of those students under your charge rests in our ability to protect them. This includes making the targeting of schools and school transport difficult, or impossible, through information security.
Bus drivers should inspect their vehicles as a standard safety and maintenance procedure; however, in situations where bomb threats may exist, this check can also address the need to identify potential explosive devices.
The bus driver should check from the front of the vehicle, looking underneath the bumper, down the sides of the vehicle and in the wheel arches, and around the rear bumper area and back to the front of the bus, looking for objects which are not part of the vehicle, but which may be painted and disguised in nature, or which may have been have been placed inside the vehicle when not in use. If an unusual or suspicious object is identified, this should be considered a suspect device. It should not be touched or moved, and the area where identified should be evacuated immediately, with the bus driver contacting police immediately.
If a suspicious object is identified, then this should be considered a suspect device and it should not be touched or moved, and the area should be evacuated, with the bus driver contacting the police immediately.
The ability to communicate is a critical part of receiving information which may alert you to safety and security threats, but importantly, for you to also pass on information relating to potential or occurring threat to others. This passage of information must be fast and accurate, allowing those supporting you to provide quick and effective instructions, or to mobilize practical help effectively. It is important that your communications are:
Accurate: Do not embellish, exaggerate or assume, rather report what you see, hear and know; and
Detailed: Provide full details of what is occurring, what you are doing, and what help you need.
Emergency Communications Plan
Bus drivers and bus monitors should ensure that they have preset phone numbers loaded on their mobile phones, which are clearly marked for ease of access during an emergency situation.
These should include local police authorities and medical emergency responders, key managers within the school, and other bus driver and bus monitor numbers.
A paper copy should also be carried within a wallet or purse should the bus driver or bus monitor need to leave the bus, and if their mobile phones are lost or damaged in the process, allowing them to use landlines or other mobile phones to pass on time sensitive information, and importantly, so that others may contact them during an emergency.
In the event that emergency communication protocols are initiated it will be important for information to be shared quickly and accurately with the appropriate points of contact. You may be under pressure, in a high stress and confusing situation, and as such it can be difficult to pass on full and accurate information easily. As such, having a reporting protocol can help