ARVA, Ontario — Murphy Bus Lines was one of the many pupil transportation operations impacted by this year’s harsh winter, but in the face of the challenges it presented, the company’s employees worked together and remained focused on safely transporting students.
Vice President Rob Murphy said the company experienced mornings when the temperature was minus 25 degrees Celsius (which is minus 13 degrees Fahrenheit), and for two days after Christmas break, bus service was brought to a halt when the temperature fell even lower due to the wind chill factor: minus 40 degrees Celsius (which is minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit). This was the lowest temperature the area had experienced in 20 years, according to Murphy.
“By the middle of January, many days were lost due to snow squalls off Lake Huron coming straight through our service area,” he added. “In total, for 10 days, students cheered, as buses did not leave many yards in southwestern Ontario.”
Throughout the season, staff at the company’s terminals and at local pupil transportation consortiums used DTN Weather, a weather system provided by Schneider Electric, to track weather patterns, local radar and storm predictions.
When conditions were safe for buses to run, experience and teamwork kept routes running smoothly.
“Our knowledge of the area, help from local snow plow operators and cooperation between bus operators, consortiums and drivers ensured that our precious cargo was taken care of each and every day,” Murphy said.