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March 30, 2010  |   Comments (1)   |   Post a comment

Pennsylvania DOT to expand access to driving records


ABINGTON, Pa. — The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (DOT) will make a change to its policy regarding driving records for school bus driver applicants in the wake of a fatal crash in February involving a school bus driver.

As SBF previously reported, bus driver Frederick Robert Poust III was transporting 45 middle school students when he attempted to turn left into a school driveway. Footage from an onboard recorder shows the bus turning into the path of an oncoming car. Poust’s bus struck the car, killing the passenger.

Poust obtained a CDL notwithstanding the fact that he had been involved in a fatal accident in 1999 where, distracted by his hand-held cell phone, he drove through a stop sign and into an oncoming car, killing a 2-year-old girl.

State Rep. Josh Shapiro (D-Montgomery), who sent a letter to Pennsylvania DOT Secretary Allen D. Biehler last month calling on the agency to make all accident information available to school districts prior to hiring school bus drivers, said that the DOT will amend its policy to expand accident information contained on a driver’s record.

The severity of the accident will be included on all driver records, regardless of the type of license the individual holds. School districts will receive the entire driver history at no cost, and school bus contractors have the option of paying $5 per record or an annual fee of $200 for unlimited access.

The changes will be implemented no later than October.

"The decision to provide full driver history ends the stove-piping in our government to ensure the safety and well-being of our children," Shapiro said.

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Read more about: distracted driving, school bus crash

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Ohio did this several years ago... and it's free (and required information) for anyone providing school-age service... including contractors.

John Q. Busdriver    |    Mar 31, 2010 04:30 AM

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