The New Jersey Division of Motor Vehicles released an updated report card on state school buses.  The numbers are not encouraging, but DMV says there is no reason to panic.

The Press of Atlantic City reports that 47% of buses failed inspection and had to be taken off the road, while an additional 12% failed for minor items that do not affect safety and need only be repaired within 30 days.

N.J. DMV spokesperson Elyse Coffey explains that "buses often fail for very small things", and that 91% of the buses that fail inspection are repaired, re-inspected and passed within 24 hours.  There are 180 items on the state checklist that can result in a school bus failing inspection - ranging from worn brakes, a broken seat belt or having just one of the 35 lights malfunction..

South Jersey school officials say they are aware of the report, and would be concerned if failed inspections left students stranded.

If there is any good news to take out of this, Egg Harbor Township (one of the largest school bus fleets in South Jersey with 145 buses) has taken extra steps to stay on top of even minor problems, and as a result reduced its failure rate from 73 percent in 2010 to 35 percent in the most recent report, making them one of the most efficient fleets in the state.