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HISD equips 63 buses with three-point seat belts

HOUSTON – The Houston Independent School District has 63 new buses with three-point seat belts for the students who will ride in them.

The new school buses are for regular education and are equipped with the safety gear. They soon will be equipped with reminder stickers on the windows. The reminder signs are already on the seat backs.

"It actually has a sign that says fasten seat belts on there. So when students sit down, they'll know that they're required to fasten their three-point seat belt," HISD transportation general manager Nathan Graf said.

At the beginning of last school year, a school bus crashed in southeast Houston, killing two students and seriously injuring two others, including Brandon Williams and his twin sister.

“It was just like all of a sudden ... like a panic. Everybody started panicking," Williams said from his hospital bed last September.

Since then, his mother and others have lobbied for seat belts in school buses.

Now the three-point seat belts are recommended by the National Highway Safety Administration.

They come at a cost of about $8,000 per school bus.

HISD has a fleet of 1,100 buses.

The district said 430 have lap belts and 90 with three-point seat belts.