LETTER: Diesel school buses are a health hazard

From reader Terry Lowrey

Re: Electric buses added to SD8 transportation fleet, Oct 19

In listing the benefits of electricity costing less than fuel, fewer moving parts equaling reduced maintenance/repair cost and the carbon savings of about 17 tonnes of greenhouse emissions annually, they failed to identify one of the most important benefits: Eliminating school bus diesel exhaust will improve the health of our children.

Diesel is a well known carcinogen and respiratory irritant. Children with asthma are most vulnerable to its effects and children exposed daily to diesel exhaust have a greater chance of developing asthma later in life. Children experience exposure to diesel exhaust when around school bus loading areas, especially when the buses are allowed to idle.

I do applaud SD8 for moving forward on electrification of the bus fleet, but I do wish they would acknowledge the hazards diesel exhaust poses to children and the public at large.

We should all become more aware of this health hazard among us and strive to reduce or eliminate polluting diesel vehicles at every opportunity.

Terry Lowrey