Both Indiana and Illinois receive failing grades for safety around schools and buses

A recent poll shows both Indiana and Illinois got failing grades when it comes to street safety around schools and school buses.

Posted: Dec 11, 2018 11:38 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - A recent report shows both Indiana and Illinois got failing grades when it comes to street safety around schools and school buses. 

In the past few months, we've heard about multiple injuries and even deaths of students 

It's something bus drivers in Vigo County say is unacceptable.

Trini Barnes takes cares of 45 kids each day.

They're the kids who ride her school bus to and from Rio Grande elementary school in Vigo County.

"They come to me and they're my children," Barnes said. "I tell their parents when you give me your child they're mine. I love them. They're my kids." 

So. when she hears about another accident involving a student getting on or off a school bus she said she can't handle it. 

The main problem Barnes finds is drivers not paying attention to the school bus light and the stop arm.

"Stop arm violations happen frequently throughout the county. We can hear reports going on all over the radio," she said. "It's a constant habit of the general population that just really don't want to pay attention to the yellow school bus." 

Barnes said each driver does a pre and post check of their school bus for each trip to make sure everything is safe for the students inside the bus. 

When it comes to other drivers, she said they do everything they can to make sure the kids are safe. 

"We give a warning to all drivers coming and going when we are going to stop. I always enter on the door side and exit on the door side," she said. "I only ask them to come to me when it's safe. When I'm at a complete stop when all vehicles are at a complete stop." 

She said when you're driving during school hours make sure you're paying attention.

"Take into consideration when they see the big yellow school bus that they would want to protect our children and love our children as much as they love their own," Barnes said. 

State Senator Eric Bassler is working on new legislation to beef up penalties for drivers who ignore school bus stop arms.

He says he wants to hold drivers more accountable. 

If you would like to see the map with all of the failing states and school districts you can find that here.  

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