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Schools to take over bus safety inspections from UHP under new bill

FILE (Credit: KSLTV)

SALT LAKE CITY – A new bill gaining support at the state capitol from troopers, bus drivers, and school districts would stop the Utah Highway Patrol from their annual safety checks on school buses.

Instead, it would turn that responsibility to the school districts to perform those safety checks.

Ben Horsley with the Granite School District says it’s something they already do, and they do it more often than the UHP.

“We inspect these buses to a higher extent than UHP every 60 days, in addition to the daily inspection that occurs,” Horsley told lawmakers on Tuesday.

Representative Lee Perry, who was a trooper for decades, said it takes UHP about a month to inspect roughly 3,000 buses. He believes troopers should be on the highways and not doing double work.

“These troopers all have to go through every bus and inspect them when they’re already inspected. They’ve been prepared by the district,” Perry said.

The bill, which passed out of committee unanimously on Tuesday, would still let the UHP perform random safety inspections on some buses.

“And if [UHP troopers] find a district that is having problems or issues, then they will do 100% inspections on those buses,” Perry said.