Contributed anonymously by a concerned parent:
We have a major problem with people running the stop signs that are on the busses. Yesterday morning 3 of my children were getting on the bus and almost hit by a car. All because a high school student couldn’t wait. He never even slowed down. There were 4 kids at the stop, and 3 of them were mine. I will copy and paste the story from their bus driver below. The principal at the school basically gave the kid a slap on the hand. The kid is supposed to call us and apologize. That doesn’t seem like enough to me. I want him to apologize in person to my kids and I want him to see what he almost took away from our family, all because of one stupid decision that would not have only impacted everyone that knows my kids, but also this kid as well. Why didn’t this kid get a fine? Why didn’t he get his driving privileges taken away?? So far he hasn’t called me, and truthfully I would be surprised if he did. I live on 1st ave just south of the RR tracks.
Here’s the story from the bus driver:
On route this morning things were going good. Nothing out of the ordinary. All the civilian drivers were obeying the laws and stopping when they needed to. The kids were still a bit sleepy so the ride was peaceful. “Today is a good day to be a bus driver!”
Until my second to last stop.
I had 4 kids that needed to cross the road. I activated my ambers about 100 feet prior to stopping. Put my hazards on (because when I don’t people don’t seem to see all the other flashing lights…) just before stopping completely. Activated my red lights and deployed my stop arm. Checked traffic in front of me and behind me and motioned to the kids to cross.
Can you guess what happened next?
If you guessed someone blew through the stop arm… you’d be wrong. Well… kinda wrong.
The kids were in the middle of the street and I checked my mirrors again- this is normal, I’m constantly checking my mirrors. And that’s when I see it.
Not passing me on the left… but on the right hand side, in the dirt, off the road where the kids will be in 3 Seconds? Speeding. Not far away so when the kids wrap around to get in the door……..
If I stop the kids they will be in the middle of the road.
If I have them keep coming they will be in the way of the car.
They can’t see the car.
The car isn’t stopping.
The kids aren’t stopping.
I can’t get out of my seat to stop them.
The car can’t see the kids.
Oh crap, I’ve scared the kids and now they are running to get in.
2 kids are on.
There goes the car.
I’ve only counted 3 kids.
Check my student mirror.
Check the stairwell.
Okay, there is number 4.
My kids are okay.
They are okay.
We are okay.
How quickly life can change in just a few seconds time- thankfully today was an exception.
You know how you try and swallow the lump in your throat and “stay strong” for the kids? I didn’t do that so well- I cried, I had a pit in my stomach and didn’t know if my nerves would ever calm.
Before getting to the school to unload my kids I told them I loved them and I’d do anything to keep them safe.
And it’s true. Your kids become mine the second they set foot at the bus stop.
Please talk with your student drivers, your spouse, your parents and your friends about stopping for a school bus. One “silly” decision or suggestion from your friend to “just go around” because you don’t want to wait 30 seconds could change your life forever.
ITS EVERYONES RESPONSIBILITY!