NHTSA has made several amendments to the Federal motor vehicle safety standard for bus emergency exits. First, based on a proposal made in response to a petition for rulemaking from the School Bus Manufacturers Technical Council (SBMTC), NHTSA has amended the standard to specify that the exterior release (the exterior handle) for school bus rear emergency exit doors may be located opposite the door hinges, rather than located in the middle of the door.

Second, this final rule also clarifies the standard as to the number of force applications that are required to open a window or roof emergency exit.

Third, in response to a comment on the proposed rule, this document makes a technical correction by removing a reference to a no-longer existent figure. These amendments correct or clarify the requirements of the standard.

The effective date is April 1, 2013. Manufacturers are provided optional early compliance with this final rule beginning March 30, 2012.

Related content: NHTSA Rejects Petition for Mandatory Bus Seat Belts