MADISON, Ala. - It’s almost time for students to head back to school for the spring semester, and Madison County schools and Madison Police are collaborating to ensure kids get to school as safely as possible.
For many children, school bus drivers are the first school system employees to greet them first thing in the morning.
"Every morning when they get on the bus it’s 'good morning,'" said Christy Bowar, who drives school buses.
They’re tasked with getting them safely to and from school.
“There’s anywhere from 35 to 60 or 70 kids on a bus at one time,” said Bowar.
Sometimes, other drivers make their jobs harder.
“One of the main issues -- it’s been an on going issue -- is drivers passing a stopped school bus," said Madison Police Sgt. Greg Dees. "State statute says that you need to stop you are required to stop for a bus with its red lights on."
Dees briefed Madison County school bus drivers about bus safety and distracted driving. He’s also reaching out to the community for assistance.
“I’m asking that we have a little bit of patience in the morning, I know that traffic volume is extremely heavy and everyone is trying to get to where they are going,” said Dees.
Dees said the fourth time for passing a stopped school bus is a felony.
There’s already a lot on the minds of bus drivers.
“There are children and distractions inside the bus, and you’ve got drivers around us, the ones who pass our stop signs when they’re out,” said Bowar.
So help them keep your children safe.
Dees also is asking people to be courteous and to let school buses in, especially at non-traffic light intersections.