Schools Bus Deaths Raise Safety Concerns Locally


Three Arkansans were killed and several others injured in Missouri earlier this week after a truck failed to stop for a school bus and crashed into the side of it, causing both vehicles to catch fire.

Paying attention in a school zone and around a bus carrying students is common sense to many , but to others it may not be on their radar.

“It’s concerning to me not only as a citizen but as a parent,” said Leon Fletcher, Bentonville Resident.
Busy streets flooded with drivers, buses and school aged children is mixture for many like Fletcher that doesn’t sit well.

“Some of them don’t even make an attempt to stop they just blow right past them,” Fletcher said.
A trend that has many in his neighborhood concerned

“I usually see half a dozen people running up and down the road texting and if they don’t have their eyes on the road they aren’t looking at the road or looking at the buses or kids,” Fletcher said.

While many outside the buses have seen the unsafe conditions, those in charge of getting the bus to its destination are also aware of the carelessness out on the road. 
“That’s a major concern is when students are getting on or off a bus, someone running a bus lights and a student being hit by a car,” said Mike McClure, Fayetteville Public Schools Director of Transportation.

Although not everyone may be an expert on the rules of the road, passing the stop signs outside of a school bus will cost you a fine starting at $250.

“It’s a pretty serious infraction as far as running a school buses stop signs, ” McClure said. People may continue to break the law, many public schools are prepared to keep their passengers safe.

“If it looks like a car looks like is going to break the law and pass the sign we always try to have signal the driver will hit the horn or indicate to the student with a hand gesture,” McClure said. 

Those that have children traveling on those buses have a firm and final message.

“Even if you aren’t a parent and you hit a child and hurt them or kill them that is going to weigh on your heart and mind for the rest of your life,” Fletcher said.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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