Kids left be­hind by bus driver ‘an iso­lated case’

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - AN­GELIQUE PAT­TER­SON

A Trans­port and Main Roads in­ves­ti­ga­tion has re­vealed an “iso­lated in­ci­dent” of a high school stu­dent in the Dou­glas re­gion be­ing left be­hind by his school bus.

In a sep­a­rate in­ci­dent, a con­cerned par­ent told the Gazette her son was al­most left be­hind be­cause he for­got his bus pass.

“My son lives in Newell Beach and has Newell on his bus card, but some­times he comes to stay with me in Port,” she said.

“He got on the bus to come to my house and was asked for $5 but he did not have the money and was told to get off the bus.

“The bus driver said, ’It’s not my prob­lem’.”

A teacher sup­pos­edly over­heard what was hap­pen­ing and gave the stu­dent money from the school of­fice to get on the bus to get home.

“I did see two chil­dren taken off the bus and I asked them where they were go­ing and they said home be­cause they weren’t al­lowed on the bus,” the con­cerned par­ent said.

“They had for­got­ten their bus cards but they were in school uni­form.

“With what hap­pened to Daniel Mor­combe, for par­ents it brings it all into re­al­ity and some of these kids might not have par­ents at home - it’s a duty of care is­sue.”

A Trans­port spokesper­son said the in­ci­dent where one male sec­ondary stu­dent was left be­hind is an iso­lated event and no other stu­dents in the Dou­glas re­gion have been af­fected.

“An in­ves­ti­ga­tion into an al­le­ga­tion that a stu­dent was left be­hind con­firmed an iso­lated in­ci­dent in the Dou­glas re­gion,” the spokesper­son said.

“The bus driver con­cerned re­fused the stu­dent travel be­cause he could not pro­duce his bus pass.

“This re­fusal was con­trary to the pro­vi­sions of the depart­ment’s Code of Con­duct for stu­dents trav­el­ling on school buses.”

The driver has un­der­gone fur­ther train­ing in driver re­spon­si­bil­i­ties un­der the code and all driv­ers in the bus com­pany have been re­minded of their obli­ga­tions while driv­ing school buses.

Photo by AN­GELIQUE PAT­TER­SON

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