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WallyG
Advanced Member

United States
254 Posts

Posted - 03/04/2009 :  6:09:59 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Indianapolis - Police arrested a local school bus driver after they say he drove over a hundred students with a blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit. Parents are outraged, saying they can't believe the bus driver put their children in so much danger.

Some of the students told their parents when they got off the school bus that it was a scary ride home. That's when the parents alerted school police.

Phillip Leslie was hired to drive school buses for Franklin Township last August. The 47-year-old is a retired Perry Township firefighter. That's just one reason parents like Pam Weber find it hard to believe his drunk driving arrest.

"They could have all been killed and killed other people in the process. It could have just been a catastrophe," said Weber.

As Leslie dropped off students from Kitley Elementary Tuesday afternoon, the students say he drove erratically. The last two of his 104 student passengers say he even hit a mailbox.

Aaron Schwarzkopf's sister rode Leslie's school bus. He and his friends are shocked about the drunk driving arrest too.

"I thought it was crazy because my sister was on the bus and younger kids [were] on the bus and something bad could have happened to them," he said.

"I was scared for a couple of my friends because they said he was swerving and saying some inappropriate stuff," said Brandon Koons, student.

When Leslie got to Oris Road he dropped off his last two student passengers, and they too reported the erratic driving to their parents. Somehow Leslie made it back to the bus barn followed by a school police officer.

The officer reportedly found Leslie slumped over the wheel. Police say Leslie could barely open the bus door.

After failing a sobriety test, a Metro police officer says his blood alcohol level registered .22.

The bus driver's charges include operating a vehicle while intoxicated, operating a vehicle while intoxicated with children in the vehicle, felony neglect and public intoxication.

In addition to going to jail, Leslie will also lose his job. The school district says it will immediately seek Leslie's termination from employment.

The school district says it won't comment further because it is an ongoing investigation.

Leslie is being held in the Marion County jail on a $75,000 bond.

http://www.wthr.com/global/story.asp?s=9942300

Spencer
Senior Member

United States
188 Posts

Posted - 03/07/2009 :  4:05:10 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Good he should lose his job if he is going to do that.

New School Bus Site:
www.schoolbuslover.smfnew.com/index.php
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WallyG
Advanced Member

United States
254 Posts

Posted - 03/08/2009 :  03:44:17 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm sure he'll be eating off those steel trays for a long time.
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Lords47
Top Member

USA
714 Posts

Posted - 03/08/2009 :  06:53:33 AM  Show Profile  Send Lords47 an AOL message  Reply with Quote
Since when is there a 104 passenger school bus??? So not only was he driving while drunk, he was operating a bus over the legal capacity? This guy is fantastic!

However, no one at his bus company (boss, dispatcher, other drivers) noticed the alcohol on his breath, or any other tell tale signs before he left the bus yard? Seems to me, if you're 3 times the legal limit, you're going to show signs of it.

- Ryan

Edited by - Lords47 on 03/08/2009 06:54:41 AM
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JK
Top Member

USA
7307 Posts

Posted - 03/08/2009 :  09:15:35 AM  Show Profile  Visit JK's Homepage  Reply with Quote
May be one of eleven states that allows upto 25-percent overcapacity on their school buses. Federal regulations do not specify the number of persons that can sit safely on a school bus seat. Most states use the manufacture's capacity rating, which the manufacture disclaims.

"In-use" capacity is the actual rating for safe transport, in that students, "should be properly and safely seated facing forward. In addition, the State Directors Association believes there should be adequate space on the seat for the child to be seated completely within the seating compartment."

Some states allow students to stand in the aisle while the bus travels down the road. Apparently this would not meet FMVSS 222 in a school bus, all the students must be seated "within" the width of their seat.

In addition to being overcapacity the bus may be overloaded. I read that, "axle weight (front and rear) and gross vehicle weight (fully fueled with 150 lb driver) is calculated early in the design stage. Typically 120 pounds per student is used. (A typical 39" seat is calculated to hold 3 students.) Standees would bring a bus closer to its designed maximum if not exceeding that limit."

Where injuries or a crash to occur, because of maneuvering issues on an overloaded school bus the resulting liability would seem unacceptable to schools. Their answer: Do not make sudden maneuvers and don’t crash the bus.

Some years ago a school bus driver in Georgia reported that she transports 85+ elementary students daily on her 72-passenger bus. The bus is considered overcrowded at that facility only when students are standing. She can seat upto four to a seat.

Apparently in Virginia, at least at some districts, their students can stand on an overloaded bus, but only during the first few days of school.

Would find no problem myself for young children that can fit within the seat's protection on beltless buses, or belted to accommodate four young children within the seat. Sitting properly forward and within the seat I believe would still meet "in-use" capacity.

But standing? Bus drivers have reported excessive difficulty maintaining order and also in walking from the front to the back of the bus when students are standing in the aisle. Just how are standing students protected by compartmentalization?

Would think a drunk bus driver transporting 104 students at one time, if this is accurate, would get the attention of state and federal agencies well beyond the intoxicated bus driver involved. The story seems to lack that concern, other than a brief mention.

Again, if the story is accurate, they must be transporting precious sardines. (jk)

School Bus Seat Capacity: Click Here for source

Policy Development Sheet: – School Bus Code of Conduct - Click Here for Link

FREE School Bus Safety Ads & Photo Library
Post Check, Child Left Behind, Hostage Takeover, Bus Fire, Danger Zones and special effects photos now available Free to use at websites, in newsletters, memos, the local press, letters to parents and more. This is a very popular Website. If you can't get in bookmark the page and try again later.



There is no school bus driver shortage!
Properly train, effective support and pay that retains.

Edited by - JK on 03/08/2009 09:21:54 AM
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Thomas Ford 85-16
Top Member

USA
4170 Posts

Posted - 03/09/2009 :  07:20:31 AM  Show Profile  Visit Thomas Ford 85-16's Homepage  Send Thomas Ford 85-16 an AOL message  Reply with Quote
I'm not going to pick apart the article here, but the 104 passengers could've been on and off the bus at separate times. We have one-tiered runs in our district, but don't stop at the ES, MS, and HS in a row. We might pick up (or drop off) kids in between the schools, therefore, in one tier you may have 150 kids go through your door. Makes for a long ride for the country kids, but it's the most efficient use of our buses. Maybe this Franklin Township has something similar (is it rural?). Just a thought.
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WallyG
Advanced Member

United States
254 Posts

Posted - 03/10/2009 :  02:29:39 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Must be 2 tiers. Franklin Township is not what I'd consider rural.
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CPCSC_TD
Top Member

USA
657 Posts

Posted - 03/10/2009 :  10:53:24 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
In many districts, especially around Indianapolis, driver's may report directly to their bus. That being being said, he may have driven directly to the school and parked and avoided everyone.

I am sure he will pay the price for the poor decision. Bottom line in my opinion is no one was hurt.
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JK
Top Member

USA
7307 Posts

Posted - 03/14/2009 :  08:34:56 AM  Show Profile  Visit JK's Homepage  Reply with Quote
School bus driver's boss had been told he drank

By Cindy Marshall

MAR 14 2009
IndyStar.com

Ronda Schmitt thought she was mad last week. That's when the Franklin Township mom learned her children had been on a school bus whose driver, police say, was drunk.

Her emotions flared again Friday after learning that a supervisor had prior knowledge that bus driver Phillip K. Leslie might have been drinking on the job.

Susie Fields, Franklin Township Schools' supervisor of transportation, resigned after a school district investigation revealed she received two oral reports that Leslie smelled of alcohol just days before he was arrested March 3.

Leslie remained in the Marion County Jail on Friday, charged with drunken driving with more than 100 students on his school bus during two routes.

"I'm even more outraged than I was before, if she (Fields) had prior knowledge and then was not there to meet him every single day and allowed this to happen," said Schmitt, 37.

"It's just like with all these circumstances," Schmitt said. "Can it continue to get any worse?" ...

Click Here for full story

Policy Development Sheet: – School Bus Code of Conduct - Click Here for Link

FREE School Bus Safety Ads & Photo Library
Post Check, Child Left Behind, Hostage Takeover, Bus Fire, Danger Zones and special effects photos now available Free to use at websites, in newsletters, memos, the local press, letters to parents and more. This is a very popular Website. If you can't get in bookmark the page and try again later.



There is no school bus driver shortage!
Properly train, effective support and pay that retains.
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WallyG
Advanced Member

United States
254 Posts

Posted - 03/14/2009 :  4:18:33 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
If this supervisor had just the least little bit of suspiction and didn't do anything she should be charged with a crime.

I've sent 3 for suspect randoms this year, all 3 failed. Based on dispatch smelling or noticing somehting out of the ordinary. Can't take any chances in this business.
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CPCSC_TD
Top Member

USA
657 Posts

Posted - 03/20/2009 :  5:10:15 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Be cautious that you are within state guidelines and DOT.

Again, there are two sides to every coin.
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news
Top Member

Canada
2951 Posts

Posted - 05/02/2009 :  08:53:29 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ex-bus driver pleads guilty to drinking charge

Indianapolis Star - May 1, 2009

A former Franklin Township school bus driver accused of driving drunk with students aboard pleaded guilty Thursday to criminal recklessness and driving while intoxicated.

full story




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christ21
New Member

United States
1 Posts

Posted - 05/27/2009 :  11:17:50 PM  Show Profile  Visit christ21's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Marion County...this hell should be hanged till death.
police has to be more strict.
i mean how he can do so.
dui
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NathanW
Advanced Member

United States
313 Posts

Posted - 05/28/2009 :  09:05:50 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
When I red the first sentence I was aghast. Not because of the DUI, but because I misread the sentence and thought the driver ran OVER 100 kids, not that he was driving that many while drunk.

Yes I was aghast that he was driving drunk, but the way that first sentence is worded was messed up.

"Police arrested a local school bus driver after they say he drove over a hundred students with a blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit. Parents are outraged, saying they can't believe the bus driver put their children in so much danger."

Nathan--Driver Extraordinaire
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CPCSC_TD
Top Member

USA
657 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2009 :  05:07:40 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
He did drive over a 100 kids. He took a first tier then did his second tier.
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