Before they hit the road, over 20,000 Ohio school buses must pass a rigorous inspection

CINCINNATI -- Before Tri-State school buses hit the roads for this upcoming school year, they must pass inspection. 

“As I move around the bus I’m going to check the mirrors, the windshield glass, the glass around the driver,” Ohio State Highway Patrol motor vehicle inspector Neil Yockey said. 

Yockey looks for anything that could indicate a problem on the buses he inspects.

“Open the back door, here you got the buzzer going off,” Yockey said. “All the lights should come on inside along with that buzzer.”

Yockey is one of a team of motor vehicle inspectors with the Ohio State Highway Patrol who check every school bus in the state and make sure they’re ready to roll on the first day of school.

“Our main goal is to make sure that one of these buses do not crash because of mechanical problem,” Yockey said.

About 20,000 Ohio school buses are inspected twice a year by the OHSP. A blue sticker means the bus in question passed inspection, but serious violations could keep a bus off the road.

“An out of service violation means the bus cannot operate until it’s fixed and transport the children,” OSHP Southern Ohio License & Commercial Standards Commander Lt. James David Lott said.

The inspection includes more than 100 items to make sure everything on the vehicles is working properly. The bulk of these inspections take place between spring time and the weeks right before school starts. The final report is sent electronically. 

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