Centre for Road Safety

Watch our animation to see how pedestrians, drivers, cyclists and passengers can all stay safe on and around buses. Read a transcript.

We all have a part to play

Our Be Bus Aware campaign highlights the importance of bus safety for all road users. Buses are large, heavy vehicles and can’t stop quickly.

Each year, Bus Safety Week helps raise awareness for all road users on how to stay safe on and around buses, helping to reduce injuries and fatalities.

Millions of trips

NSW has the largest metropolitan bus fleet in Australia. More than 3850 buses operate in the Sydney area, while another 1000 buses service the Newcastle, Wollongong and Blue Mountains areas. Passengers take more than 200 million trips on buses in NSW each year.

From 2011 to 2015 in the Sydney-Newcastle-Wollongong metropolitan area there were 1,588 crashes involving a heavy bus, where 18 people were killed and 1,130 people were injured.

Pedestrians

Pedestrians made up more than half of the bus fatalities over the 2011 to 2015 period. Bus Safety Week promotes safety for pedestrians, who should:

  • Plan ahead and don't rush for the bus
  • Follow the rules and cross with care
  • Avoid being distracted by mobile devices
  • Stand back from the kerb when waiting for a bus.

Bus drivers

Watch our bus safety video featuring bus drivers, who take on the responsibility of looking after hundreds of people every day. Read a transcript.

 

Drivers

We know that because of their sheer size and mass, buses cause severe outcomes for other road users in crashes. Drivers of other vehicles make up about a quarter of all fatalities and serious injuries recorded in heavy bus crashes. Buses can't stop quickly and drivers should:

  • Give way to buses
  • Not merge too closely in front of buses
  • Reduce speed to 40 km/h when bus lights are flashing.

Cyclists

  • If you are overtaking a bus, avoid passing it when it is turning - buses can take up more than one lane when they turn
  • You may travel in a Bus Lane, Tram Lane, Transit Lane or Truck Lane but not in a Bus Only Lane
  • Follow the rules and ride with care.

Passengers

More than one quarter of all seriously injured bus passengers are aged 70 years or over. If you are older, have a disability or are pregnant, try to sit closer to the front of the bus or in a courtesy seat. All bus passengers should:

  • Press the button well before your stop to give the driver plenty time to stop safely
  • Wait until the bus has stopped before you get out of your seat.

Operation safe transit

Our Agent Walker: Operation Safe Transit bus safety video was produced for school students in years 5 and 6, their teachers, parents and carers. The video can be found on the Safety Town website, our online resource for more than 2600 primary schools in NSW to teach road safety education to students and help prevent road-related injuries and deaths.

Working together

Our campaign has been developed with input from the State Transit Authority, Bus NSW, Roads and Maritime Services, and the NSW Police Force. The Department of Education, the Catholic Education Commission, the Association of Independent Schools and the Kids and Traffic Early Childhood Road Safety Education Program at Macquarie University also support Be Bus Aware and Bus Safety Week.