Chatham Co. Parents Concerned About Long Bus Rides Home In Hot Temperatures

As temperatures continue to soar in Chatham County some parents are getting heated about their kids sweaty bus rides home.

Sabrina Johnson said her 7-year-old son comes home drenched after riding the school bus.

“Very tired, very thirsty, hot, he’s sweating, he’s wet, begging for water every day when I get him off the bus,” said Johnson.

Johnson said her son’s bus doesn’t have air and kids are suffering the consequences.

“I just thought one night I was going to have to take him to the emergency room. I had to take off his shirts and he just kept repeating he was hot, he was hot and I had to make sure he wasn’t confused or on the verge of passing out,” said Johnson.

Johnson said she tried to tell her 2nd grader to sit by an open window.

“He’s the last one to get off so I’m not sure whether or not if the kids when they get off they roll up their window so by the time he gets to me all the windows are rolled up,” said Johnson.

Johnson said this issue wouldn’t be as big of deal if kids didn’t have such long ride times.

“He’s on the bus for at least an hour and 40 minutes if not longer .The earliest I ever got him off was maybe an hour but that’s too long when you have no air,” said Johnson.

Johnson said there needs to be a compromise to help ensure a safe ride home.

“The children need something, they really do. I feel so sorry for them. I’m sweating right now standing here so I imagine them on the bus going through a rough time,” said Johnson.

School District Spokesman Kurt Hetager said the district is making an effort to phase in new buses with A/C. MV/Reliant said out of the 440 buses in the fleet, 100 have A/C including Special Education buses.

Hetager said students are allowed to bring a bottle of water on the bus and keep the window rolled down.


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