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HomeMiddle EastNew Abu Dhabi school bus system will keep pupils safe

New Abu Dhabi school bus system will keep pupils safe

ABU DHABI // A safety system that makes sure all pupils are accounted for has been installed on hundreds of school buses.

Emirates Transport and Abu Dhabi Education Council said 1,300 vehicles had been fitted with the system, which counts the number of children getting on and off. It requires the driver to check each seat and triggers an alarm if anyone remains onboard.

The new technology aims to prevent a repeat of the case of Nizaha Aalaa, the three-year-old who died of heat exhaustion in October last year after being locked inside a school bus.

All 1,300 buses for kindergarten and Cycle One pupils are equipped with electronic count system, a bus-checking system, and a motion detecting system.

A sensor detects any movement inside the bus when the engine shuts down at the end of a journey, providing an alert message if a child is still on board.

“Emirates Transport has achieved this milestone for all school buses to be equipped with these smart systems for day one of the new academic year,” said Dr Amal Al Qubaisi, director general of Adec, who hoped it would be applied to all school buses in Abu Dhabi emirate.

“We have to prepare to welcome the students in school and when they leave their homes by providing a safe transport for them,” she said.

She said Adec would work with Emirates Transport, Abu Dhabi Police, and the Department of Transport to improve the safety of buses.

“We will not tolerate any school transport accidents as we are keen on ensuring our children’s safety and security,” Dr Al Qubaisi said. “Necessary precautions will be made to prevent accidents.”

Mohammed Al Jarman, general manager of Emirates Transport, said his organisation and Adec were setting up a central operations room equipped with technology to track school buses’ journeys.

Emirates Transport has imported 152 buses to modernise its school bus fleet, he said.

There are 2,090 school buses in Abu Dhabi emirate, covering 254 schools, Mr Al Jarman said.

In total, 98,171 students use the bus service and are registered with Emirates Transport.

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(via The National)