'Be sure the kids are safe': Drivers urged to stay alert on roads as school year begins
As summer vacation wraps up for schools across the Valley, more school buses will be on the road.
"There's going to be a lot of traffic, a lot of commotion on the street,” said Juan Cortez, a bus driver for Brownsville ISD. “So, we need to slow it down and be sure the kids are safe."
Brownsville ISD Transportation crews are hard at work making sure 12,000 to 14,000 children get to their destination safely.
"Our main goal here in BISD Transportation is to get your child safe and on time to school and the same from school to home," said Brownsville ISD Transportation Assistant Administrator Silvia Saldana Gomez.
It's not just more buses, more drivers will be on the roads, too. Brownsville ISD says it's always a challenge when those drivers ignore the laws and go around buses. The most important thing to pay attention to is the lights on the bus.
Brownsville police Sgt. Billy Killebrew says if an officer is in the area and you don't stop for a bus, an officer will stop you and the fines will cost up to $500.
"I think the most important thing here is the children,” Sgt. Killebrew said. “You have to be careful with the kids crossing and getting off buses. Sometimes they think that all vehicles have stopped, but they'll be a car that just keeps going."
And it's not just drivers, the district also wants to remind students to be safe. Students waiting to get on the bus need to stand at least 10 feet behind the curb until the bus comes to a complete stop.
"In the morning, it's hard for our drivers to see the students at times because there's no lighting out in the street,” said Saldana Gomez. So, that's something that they need to be very careful."