Parents Frustrated with Washington County Bus Driver, District I - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Parents Frustrated with Washington County Bus Driver, District Investigating

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Parents are speaking out about a bus driver in Washington county they say raises safety concerns.

They are fed up with the drivers actions and demanding answers.

"She'll stop right here and pick the kids up if they're standing right here," explains Shaun Rhodes, a frustrated parent of 8 who lives in Vernon.

"Instead of waiting in the driveway which is a designated bus stop, she'll pull out, get down the hill, get about halfway down the hill and stop," said Rhodes. "She doesn't put out a stop sign, she doesn't put out the front bars, she doesn't even put it in park." He says the kids have to run down the slope and jump the ditch to then get on the bus.

Rhodes says there have even been times were the bus driver has completely left some of his children behind. He provided News 13 with video from a neighbor on the same route which he says shows a bus passing the driveway and not stopping for the children standing in the driveway.

"If there's children at the bus stop, we stop, if there's no children at the bus stop, we don't stop," said Mike Park, the Transportation and Maintenance Facility Director for the Washington County School District. "And that's board policy, and we follow that."

Park says he is aware of the accusations brought forth from Rhodes and is currently investigating them.

"Whatever goes on the busses were able to view and it and there's audio as well and we can hear it, " said Park. "So we have a lot of things to look at and we're still doing that at this time." This is the only video evidence Park says he's seen. If anyone does have video, he says would be more than happy to look at it.

As of Thursday, he had found no wrong doing by the driver or the district. 

Meanwhile, the actions of the driver have brought Rhodes to seek alternative methods of transportation. He now chooses to bring them to school. However, for mother of 5, soon to be 7, Nanette Thames, driving her kids isn't an option. 

"I don't want to see anyone lose their job, but in fairness to taxpayers, I think they should put someone else on the route," said Thames.