School Districts Dealing With Effects of Winter Weather

MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) — The latest round of Winter weather is causing another school closings and delays once again.

While some districts may feel more prepared this time around, there are some things they say are still out of their control.

In January, at least two school districts – Lawrence County and Morgan County – couldn’t get kids to school because, even after roads were safe, buses wouldn’t start.

Despite their best efforts, Morgan County School District┬áleaders say they don’t know for sure what Tuesday morning will bring.

“Our buses are well taken care of when weather gets down to 5 degrees they just don’t crank very well,” said Superintendent Billy Hopkins.

Morgan County schools will be closed on Tuesday.

Hopkins is erring on the safe side after the district’s buses refused to start up when the weather first dipped below freezing in January.

“This year has been very unique that it hasn’t been the ice and snow that’s been a problem, it’s been the extreme cold temperatures,” said Hopkins.

The buses run on two batteries, but it would take three to get them going when temperatures become frigid.

It would be a simple fix, but costly. At $88 per battery, times more than 120 buses Hopkins says it isn’t cost-effective, for a weather event that only happens every three or four years.

The district will not have to make up for the missed day, but Hopkins says if the extreme cold weather continues they will have to seek alternative ways to make up the time, either by cutting a day out of spring break, or adding minutes to the end of each school day.

3 comments

  • Candi

    All days should be made up, even if they have to use “”holidays””. Should have used MLK day for one and Presidents or Good Friday and even part of spring break if necessary. Why are we so complacent is the U.S. with letting our children miss out on education?

  • Dark

    A simple trouble light with a 60 watt light bulb in that battery compartment would be enough to keep the batteries warm enough to crank…

  • Simply saying

    There is no need to add a battery to every bus. If it is a battery issue to start these buses a portable jump starter or jumping them from a service vehicle you already have. So there is little or no money invested. Once the bus is started and warmed up there should be no problem. They will restart until they sit and get cold again.

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