What does a bus driver do?
Bus drivers pick up and drop off a variety of passengers at bus stations or bus stops according to specific time schedules. There are generally two types of bus drivers: transit and intercity bus drivers and school bus drivers. Transit and intercity bus drivers provide transportation to people within cities and across states. School bus drivers transport children to and from schools and to and from school related events. All bus drivers must operate buses safely and make sure they have the essential safety equipment including first aid kits, fire extinguishers, and emergency reflectors. Most bus drivers provide reports from their routes and provide notes on any abnormal events.
What kind of training does a bus driver need?
Bus drivers must have at least a high school diploma. Some employers prefer applicants with previous bus or truck driving experience. All bus drivers are typically provided with classroom and behind-the-wheel training. The training involves learning safety and driving regulations, company rules, rules of the Department of Transportation, safe driving practices, driver-passenger relations, emergency evacuation procedures, first aid, and the needs of passengers with disabilities. Bus drivers also receive continuing training to stay up to date on safety issues and changes in regulations. Bus drivers must have a commercial driver’s license. Requirements for this license include passing a written and practical examination.
What are the prospects for a career as a bus driver?
Employment of bus drivers is projected to grow about as fast as average for all professions, increasing 10% from 2006 to 2016 (1). The increased transportation needs of the constantly increasing population will drive job growth.
Job prospects are expected to be good especially for bus drivers with great driving records and for those who are willing to work irregular schedules. There will be competition for higher paying public transit positions. Job openings will also arise from the need to replace bus drivers that retire, transfer, or leave the field for other reasons.
How much do bus drivers make?
As of October 2009, the middle 50% of bus drivers earn annual salaries between $16,138 and $22,265. The top 10% earns annual salaries of more than $25,561 (2).
A career as a bus driver is a great choice for individuals interested in providing transportation to a variety of passengers. Bus drivers must be able to effectively read and speak English to read and abide by road signs, communicate with the public, and prepare reports. They must be courteous, emotionally stable, and be able to handle stressful situations. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills are essential because bus drivers interact with many different passengers. They must be able to organize and manage large groups of people and deal with various schedules.