It is a curious fact that there has never been a comprehensive study of just how, where, when and why accidents to young people happen.
Yet happen they do – in the home, on the way to and from school, on the sports field, in the classroom, in the corridor, on school trips… Wherever young people are, there will be accidents.
Which raises the question, where are the pupils and students most at risk?
Of course, not every accident is reported, but we can say that the HSE suggests that the number of accidents to pupils and students in schools is running at over 20,000 a year.
But that number excludes the 12,000 accidents a year reported to insurance companies that involve vehicles (mostly cars driven by parents) transporting children to or from school.
Of course, clearly we should never be less than eternally vigilant number no matter whether the number of accidents involving school transport is reported to be low or high. A single accident is enough to remind us of the continuing need to ensure that school owned transport is safe and reliable and that this must always be a priority for any school.
But the problem with this is that the cost of repairs and of keeping school vehicles fully maintained can be much higher than first thought, particularly as the vehicle ages.
And, until funds are raised or a budget is released to allow the work to be done, the vehicle, quite simply, cannot be used – resulting in pupils missing out on valuable learning outside the classroom experiences.
Fortunately, we have found a solution to this by offering a full maintenance programme when a school minibus is leased from Benchmark. So no matter the outcome of the vehicle’s services and MOTs, the cost of repairs won’t affect the lease price.
It is an arrangement which makes it possible for schools to fund the minibus through a small payment each month, which has the added benefit of improved budgeting and cash flow forecasting.
What’s more, leasing can often work out cheaper than buying a minibus outright (especially if one takes into account the re-sale value of a school bus at the end of its working life) or indeed, hiring a coach each time.
Benchmark Leasing Ltd
11 High Street
Tel: 01753 859944