Transportation: Is the Shuttle Safe?

Shuttles Pulling In To Pick Up Students On Campus. Photo By Jospeh Laspina/Spectrum

Shuttles Pulling In To Pick Up Students On Campus. Photo By Jospeh Laspina/Spectrum

By Meliha Gutic

Staff Reporter

On Thursday, Sept. 8, a Taft shuttle was involved in an accident with another vehicle. As the shuttle was passing through an intersection, the vehicle failed to stop at a stop sign, T-boning the shuttle, and tipping it over onto one side.

On the shuttle was the driver and one student, junior Sebastian Pierre. They were not seriously injured but were taken to Saint Vincent’s Hospital in Bridgeport as a precaution.

“I was a little too shocked to even realize what was happening,” said Pierre.

After the shock wore off, the shuttle driver broke the back window and they climbed out.

As for the driver that caused the accident, his car was damaged resulting in him fleeing the scene on foot. There is no word yet as to whether he has been found as Pierre discussed, the investigation is ongoing.

“I don’t like it. I still get nervous on the shuttle. Anytime we pass by the accident scene, I always get fidgety,” he said.

This raises the question, just how safe are the shuttles at Sacred Heart?

The Director of the Student Union, Michael Moylan, believes that the shuttles are as safe as they can be.

“We take the safety on shuttles very seriously,” he said. “We have video cameras monitoring both inside and outside the shuttle, the tracker system which also monitors speed, and making sure they brake. It gives us full monitoring of all of the metrics of the shuttles.”

Seat belts are not typically seen on the shuttles and there weren’t any on the Taft shuttle that night.

“I think there should be seat belts on shuttles, at least the ones that go across your lap,” said Pierre.

However, there are new changes set to be made for the new shuttles.

“Some of the buses have seat belts. They are not required, they are not mandatory. The newer ones [shuttles]are coming out with seat belts as the fleet is being replaced by Dattco,” said Moylan.

Yet, safety in the shuttle system is also something that some students still find flaws in.

“Because there is only one [shuttle]at night and there are people like me who don’t have the app, so sometimes it’s scary waiting outside,”  said junior Caroline Welch.

Despite recent events and student concern, the safety within our shuttle system is something that is constantly being addressed.

“If they see anything suspicious, it kind of goes along with the ‘see something, say something’ campaign that’s out there,” said Moylan. “Also, the limits are posted on the bus for their safety. Each person has to be in a seat, no one can be standing.”


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