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Back-to-school bus safety for students and drivers

Published: Jul. 28, 2020 at 4:53 PM CDT
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De Pere, Wis. (WBAY) - Back-to-school will look much different this year in the classroom, but something else to consider is school bus safety during the pandemic.

Jim Gamble, Manager for Lamers Bus Lines in West De Pere said planning has been a challenge, it’s the not knowing, but the company is working closely with local school districts to devise a plan.

“We’ve looked at different scenarios, and tried different things, and are kind of waiting for their final decisions, we’ve been very fortunate to be working very closely with all our partners at the local school districts,” said Gamble.

Action 2 News reached out to several districts in the area many told me to expect more finalized plans later this week.

Gamble said some options for safety include sanitizing buses after each route, possibly limiting the number of kids per bus, and having drivers wear a mask. The Wisconsin School Bus Association suggests students also wear a mask, and think it’s best to prohibit eating or drinking on school buses unless medically required and installing hand sanitizing stations.

“We are working on, in the plan, is to install a hand sanitizer type thing, we’re still trying to figure that out, obviously we have to work with the state on that because there are regulations that they control as to what you can put in on a bus, but they’ve been very cooperative to help us out with that,” said Gamble.

As far as bus drivers, even on a normal year, they’re looking for extra drivers, especially this year though considering if someone gets sick, they’d at least have someone to replace them.

Gamble said these are different times and it will take patience and everyone working together.

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