‘Lets go’ on bus bill

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‘Lets go’ on bus bill

Wapakoneta Daily News – The parents of a Bluffton University baseball player who died in a bus accident in Atlanta in 2007 profess it is time to move forward with legislation that requires a number of bus safety improvements. Joy and John Betts, of Bryan, appeared before the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Subcommittee during a hearing Wednesday to voice their support of the Motorcoach Enhanced Safety Act introduced by U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas. The Betts’ son, David, was among five Bluffton University baseball players killed when their bus careened over an Atlanta highway overpass.

“It just seems to us that four years is long enough to wait on what we consider to be such simple, straightforward legislation that needed to be enacted years ago, and in our opinion certainly needs to be enacted now,” said John Betts, who admitted to being angered and upset with the process. “My major theme coming here to Washington is basically ‘Let’s go’ and it’s that simple. I know the issue is more complicated than that, but quite frankly from our perspective it is not that complicated and we want to see this legislation progress.”

The recommendations, some dating back as far as 1968, include requiring seatbelts for passengers, reinforced roofs that are not as easily crushed during a rollover, glazed windows so they hold together and are less likely to shatter, windows and exits that are easier for passengers to open and improved protection against fires. Other recommendations include electric onboard recorders to keep track of the number of hours a driver of a bus is behind the wheel and improved commercial driver training requirements.

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