The one thing school buses have in common is their yellow paint job, but they don’t always look alike. You will find some that are short, some with flat fronts, and others that look like an oversize taxi. No matter what the difference is, all school buses much be manufactured with in accordance with the appropriate safety standards. If you are wondering what bus will best suit your institution, we have broken down the eight classifications for you.
- Type A: The foundation structure of type A school bus is a front cutaway front section and the driver’s door being located on the left. They are usually 30 passenger school buses and have two sub-categories: Type A-1 and Type A-2. Type A-1’s gross vehicle weight rating of 145,000 pounds and can only be driven by a driver with a CDL with a school bus and “P” or passenger endorsement. Type A-2 has a gross weight rating of about 1000 lb or more. You can get this Thomas school bus for sale online.
- Type B: This bus is designed to carry more than 90 people. The body of the bus is attached to the front of the bus, and it has a gross weight rating of 1000 lb. This bus has a section of the engine places next to the driver right behind the windshield. Students use the door places behind the from side wheel to enter and alight the bus. This bus is not very common today, but you can find a used Thomas school bus for sale online.
- Type C: This is the most common school bus on the road and is considered the traditional school bus. Its conventional design is a flat chassis with a gross weight rating typically ranging between 23500 lb to 29500 lb. The bus is designed to carry 90 passengers. Its full engine lies in front of the windshield with the passenger door placed behind the front side wheel. This is the most common Thomas school bus for sale in any state.
- Type D: Type D front engine bus has the engine placed behind the windshield and by the driver’s seat. It is designed to ferry 90 students. Type D school bus is also commonly known as the Forward Engine (FE) or the Rear Engine (RE) depending on where the engine is placed. It has a gross weight rating of 25000lb to 36000lb. For a type D Thomas school bus for sale, visit your local yard or search online for options.
- Multifunctional activity bus: This bus is not painted yellow like other conventional school buses. They are not allowed to ferry students to and from school, and they do not require the installation of flashing lights and stop arms. However, they must observe all measures that should be taken to prevent a bus crash.
- School van: If you want to buys a van to transport students as opposed to a bus, then this is your best bet. School vans must follow all specifications outlined for school buses. It must also get alterations such as cutting the roof to make the van taller and having a full roll cage welding, so the body looks like a bus. Once all the specifications have been met, the van can be used as a regular school bus.
- Alternate vehicles and non-conforming cans: Schools can use alternative cars as long as they comply with crash avoidance standards. Most of these buses, however, do not meet some regulations such as flashing lights and yellow paint required for school buses.
Non-conforming school buses are used to transport cargo, but they can ferry up to 15 sitting passengers. They are not required to conform to the safety standards that vehicles that transport students must follow. Most of them will lack the necessary safety standards laid out by the motor vehicle safety standard department.
The type of bus you choose will depend on the function you intend to use it for. Schools usually use elderly drivers, which makes it even more vital to enforce safety rules. In fact, one in every six drivers is likely 65 years or older.