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Articles/News with Florida tag

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District’s operations division honored for performance excellence
May 19, 2014
The operations division for Florida’s Orange County Public Schools receives the Governor’s Sterling Award, as does the Walton County Tax Collector’s Office. Within the school district’s operations division, the transportation department has sustained on-time arrival of buses of better than 98% from 2010 to 2013, and the transportation cost per student has been reduced from $914 to $869.
Florida district’s transportation manager resigns
April 30, 2014
John Franklin steps down after seven years as general manager of transportation of Hillsborough County Public Schools. Officials say he led the transportation department through “an eventful time of change and challenges,” and they say that Chief Facilities Officer Chris Farkas will directly oversee the transportation department until Franklin’s replacement is hired.
Florida school bus driver killed in crash
April 21, 2014
According to a preliminary police investigation, a Toyota Camry turned and struck a school bus, which veered off the road and into a pole. The bus driver, 65-year-old William Fowler II, did not survive the crash. The Toyota driver has been charged with DUI, authorities say.
Florida district buys 98 propane buses
April 7, 2014
Broward County Public Schools’ move is being called the nation’s largest single order of propane autogas school buses by a school district. Broward officials say that they expect a six-month return on investment for the additional purchase price of the alternative-fuel buses due to fuel cost and maintenance savings.
8-year-old hit by teen driver passing bus
March 27, 2014
A Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., girl is seriously injured when a 17-year-old driving a pickup truck illegally passes her stopped school bus and strikes her. The girl is taken to the hospital, but a local news source reports that her condition is improving.
Charlie Hood named next executive director of NASDPTS
March 24, 2014
Hood, the longtime Florida state pupil transportation director, will take on the association position this summer, after current Executive Director Bob Riley retires. NASDPTS President Max Christensen says that Hood "brings new ideas and enthusiasm to the position that will help the association move forward with expanded services and direction."
Bill would exempt school bus drivers from paying tolls
March 6, 2014
Under House Bill 1331 in the Florida Legislature, a person driving a public school bus or another district-owned vehicle on official school district business could pass free through all tollgates and over all toll bridges and ferries in the state. The bill’s sponsor reportedly looked into the issue after a middle school student called her office to ask about tolls paid by school bus drivers.
New bus depot to save district $400K in fuel, driver pay
February 3, 2014
Sarasota County Schools builds the depot in North Port, Fla., which the transportation director says reduces the number of empty miles the drivers had been traveling from the old depot to their first and last pickups of the day. Pickup times and routes aren’t expected to change.
Bus driver rear-ends bus, 15 students injured
December 17, 2013
The bus in front, which is transporting students for Florida’s Moody Elementary School, stops suddenly for heavy traffic. The driver behind the bus does not stop in time and will be cited for careless driving. All injured students are transported to hospitals, treated for minor injuries and released.
Florida’s Don Ross named general manager of LBS South
December 9, 2013
Ross joined the school bus dealership in April as service director after working for more than 13 years at the School District of Manatee County in several roles, including director of transportation and vehicle maintenance. In his new role, Ross will be responsible for the management, oversight and strategic direction of LBS South.
Video catches transit bus illegally passing school bus
December 3, 2013
Video from Lee County Transit shows one of its buses illegally passing a school bus that has its lights flashing and stop arm out. The transit bus driver tells officials that he thought the school bus driver had waved to indicate that it was safe for him to proceed.
Report of car following bus takes humorous turn
November 21, 2013
For school bus drivers, vigilance is essential, but sometimes it has unexpected results. That was the case in a recent incident in Miami in which a school bus driver reported a suspicious-looking vehicle following the bus.
Florida authorities make arrest in school bus thefts
November 7, 2013
Alphonso Bernard Rock, owner of 95 South Tours and Transportation, is taken into custody after deputies discover two school buses that had gone missing from a Georgia district at a football stadium in Jacksonville, Fla. Deputies also discover two school buses that were stolen from a Florida district near an interstate in Gainesville, Fla.
After child choked on bus, driver charged with neglect
October 24, 2013
A school bus driver is arrested and charged with child neglect after a child was choked unconscious by another child on her bus. Detectives say that the driver “failed to provide any assistance to the victim during or after the Oct. 15 attack.”
Florida district cuts diesel use by 151K gallons in a year
October 14, 2013
Orange County Public Schools' combined initiative of anti-idling, biodiesel and fuel-efficient buses resulted in an overall reduction of 151,788 gallons of diesel fuel this past year. The economic benefit was a cost avoidance of $538,847 in fuel costs to the district, and the environmental benefit was a reduction of 1,503 metric tons of carbon matter output.
Special-needs students help assemble restraints
October 7, 2013
About 60 students from a Florida school have been participating in the production of Q'Straint restraints, performing pre-assembly and packaging. The program has helped the students develop job skills and contribute to their own safety in transportation.
Driver, attendant comfort students when babysitter is hurt
October 4, 2013
When Mary Bennett, a bus driver for Volusia County Schools, and her attendant, Jackie Murphy, stop to pick up two special-needs students on their route, Bennett hears the students’ babysitter in their home calling for help and sees her on the floor. After Murphy calls 911, she and Bennett help the students onto the bus, and Murphy keeps them calm until emergency response arrives.
Driver keeps students safe during bus breakdown
October 2, 2013
Robin Smith, a bus driver for Florida’s Volusia County Schools, safely evacuates the students from her bus and keeps them calm after she notices smoke coming from the rear of the vehicle. A parent who was at the scene praises Smith for her actions.
Florida bus driver remembers 9/11 in letter to editor
September 17, 2013
Bus driver Peter Schuhl recounts how, when picking up 22 high school students after school that afternoon, the students sat quietly for a few minutes, then began singing “God Bless America,” “America The Beautiful” and the national anthem, inspired by the two foreign exchange students who joined in.
District reinstates busing with fee, courtesy service for dangerous routes
September 12, 2013
Lake County (Fla.) Schools students who lost courtesy bus service because they live within 2 miles of their schools will now be able to pay a $1 or $2 fee to ride the bus. Additionally, the district will restore free bus service for students within the 2-mile zones who have dangerous walking routes that include crossing roadways with high speeds or multiple lanes.

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