Yellow school buses are a common sight in most neighbourhoods across the Region, but have you seen our white school buses? We have used these unique buses for a few years as wheelchair school buses. Our white buses are recognizable by their distinct colour and black lettering across the back that reads School Purpose Vehicle.White School Bus

White wheelchair buses provide an additional level of safety for our students and neighbourhoods. These buses are regulated under the Highway Traffic Act and must be manufactured and maintained to the same standard as the yellow school buses you regularly see in our region.

White school buses provide more flexibility than traditional yellow school buses because they are subject to a different set of operating standards under the Act. The exceptions for wheelchair buses include that they can be white, have no overhead lights and can make stops off the roadway.

For safety reasons, the Ontario School Bus Association recommends using white wheelchair buses in urban areas. Picking-up or dropping-off of a student who uses a wheelchair can sometimes take more than six minutes. For yellow school buses, the Highway Traffic Act states that overhead lights must remain activated from the time a bus stops for a pick-up or drop-off until the bus departs from the stop location. This extended roadside stop is a safety concern as drivers may illegally pass the stopped school bus. White buses are allowed to pull off roadways to drop-off and pick-up students. This flexibility allows motorists to safely make their way past the bus in order to reduce traffic congestion and long delays in our neighbourhoods.

We are committed to the safety and well-being of our students and neighbourhoods. So the next time you see a white school bus, don’t do a double take. White buses are an important part of our school bus fleet to ensure we keep all children safe and moving.