There seems to be hidden signs and signals on almost everything these days, it's nothing new but now that everyone has access to social media and easy sharing the signs and signals are becoming more apparent. It wasn't until my kids were grown and long out of school did I learn what the three black stripes on a school bus meant. I never really gave the design much thought, not until Facebook, of course! School buses across the world seem to have color and design in common. But why? Is there a reasoning to it all? Of course there is, there seems to be a reason for everything these days even if they are made up and after the fact!

The bright yellow school bus is pretty common and very identifiable, along with the three solid black lines that run the length of the bus. They all have the same design and there is an amazing meaning to their marks. The black lines that mark the school bus are not just a bright, pretty idea or a copy-cat paint job, they are actually "rub rails" and they serve a purpose. The "rub rails" are a sort of bumper that add strength to the side of the bus and provide specific markings for first responders to use as a map guideline, in case of an emergency. In case of a crash or such emergency the black rails guide emergency crews where to cut or not to cut to free children from the wreckage.

The lowest black rail is the same level as the buses interior floor, the middle rail is the level of the bottom of the passenger seats, and the top rail runs the same height as either the top of the seats and/or the bottom of the window. This is to assist emergency crews where to be able to cut through the medal to safely free any child trapped inside the bus.

I love the idea that someone put so much extra thought into keeping our kiddos safe and thank you to all the first responders out there doing it everyday!

Getty Images/First Light

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