ASSEMBLY, No. 2152
STATE OF NEW JERSEY
INTRODUCED JUNE 17, 1996
By Assemblyman ROCCO
An Act requiring certain equipment for school buses and supplementing chapter 3B of title 39 of the Revised Statutes.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. All school buses with a passenger seating capacity of more than 35 shall be equipped with a second emergency exit door in the rear half of the school bus positioned between the front and rear axles which shall be constructed in compliance with regulations promulgated by the State Board of Education.
2. When the existing emergency door is situated at the rear end of the school bus, the second emergency exit door shall be placed on the left side of the bus. When the existing emergency exit door is situated on the side of the bus, the second emergency exit door shall be placed on the side opposite.
3. An access aisle of no less than 24 inches in width shall be provided from the center aisle to the second exit door.
4. A crash barrier conforming to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 222 (49 C.F.R. 571.222) and regulations promulgated by the State Board of Education shall be placed immediately forward of the seat next rearward of the second emergency exit.
5. For the purposes of this act, the maximum permissible capacity of the Type "C" and Type "D" school buses as defined in regulations promulgated by the State Board of Education shall be increased to 71 passengers and the permissible length of those buses extended to accommodate the additional rows of seats.
6. The maximum overall length of the bus shall not exceed 40 feet and the maximum overhang of the body to the rear of the rear axle shall not exceed one-third of the total length of the bus.
7. A minimum of 15 inches of seat space shall be provided for each passenger.
8. This act shall apply to school buses built on chassis manufactured on or after the effective date of this act.
9. This act shall take effect on the first day of the sixth month following enactment.
This bill requires the placement of an additional side emergency door on school buses with a passenger seating capacity of 35 or more, manufactured on or after the effective date of the bill. It also provides for an access aisle no less than 24 inches wide from the center aisle to the emergency door and requires a crash barrier adjacent to the emergency exit. In order to meet these requirements, the bill provides that the maximum seating capacity for Type "C" and Type "D" school buses be increased to 71 passengers. This additional seating capacity should result in long term economic savings from bus route reductions and lower maintenance and labor costs.
The maximum overall length of a school bus may not exceed 40 feet. A minimum of 15 inches of seat space must be provided for each passenger. The bill applies to school buses built on chassis manufactured on or after the effective date.
Provides for additional side emergency exit, aisle and increased seating capacity on certain school buses.