New buses coming to Hillsborough County schools - WFLA News Channel 8

New buses coming to Hillsborough County schools

Posted: Updated:

The Hillsborough County School District will be getting new buses.

Where the money will come from, and how many buses the district will get, remains under discussion.

On Wednesday, Tom Platt with School Bus Consultants presented his report to the school board, superintendent MaryEllen Elia, and other school officials.

"I emphasize at this point, the fleet is safe, the fleet is operating," said Platt. "But, and the big 'but' is: your fleet is old."

The report shows 25 percent of the district's fleet is 15 years old. The maximum bus age should be 12-15 years old.

Platt says there are also issues in the transportation department with maintenance and morale.

"The staffing shortages in conjunction with the aging fleet are the dominant contributing factors," said Platt.

Superintendent Elia says she is pleased with the report's findings and believes buying buses to replace the aging fleet is in order.

"We need to buy buses. That's a huge deal. It's important for us to do that," said Elia. "But I think most importantly, I think you all heard, our consultant indicated that we have safe buses in this district."

School board member April Griffin has been critical of the transportation department after a number of employees contacted her with complaints. She disagrees with the consultant's assessment of the fleet.

"When buses are spontaneously combusting, and we're having to offload children in an emergency scenario, and buses are out on the road and brakes aren't working, our children aren't safe," said Griffin. "Our bus drivers aren't safe, and people on the road aren't safe."

Several parents dropping their children off at a bus stop in Westchase say they are comfortable with the district and its busing.

"I think in all of the 16 years of putting my children on the bus, I think we had two incidents over sixteen years," said Chip Sayre. "So I don't have any concerns."

School board members are scheduled to attend a workshop on the transportation department situation next week.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.


  • Don't Miss ItMore>>

  • Dramatic doggie makeovers put new face to pet adoption

    Dramatic doggie makeovers put new face to pet adoption

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 5:14 PM EDT2014-07-29 21:14:31 GMT
    What a difference a bath can make! Millions of shelter dogs across the United States just need a little bit of grooming and TLC in order to shine, as evidenced by these photos.
    What a difference a bath can make! Millions of shelter dogs across the United States just need a little bit of grooming and TLC in order to shine, as evidenced by these photos.
  • Koala survives 54-mile ride clinging to car's grill

    Koala survives 54-mile ride clinging to car's grill

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 1:59 PM EDT2014-07-29 17:59:42 GMT
    Timberwolf clung to a car for 54 miles. Australia Zoo Facebook photoTimberwolf clung to a car for 54 miles. Australia Zoo Facebook photo
    An adorable little koala survived an amazing high-speed ride by clinging to a car for 54 miles on an Australia highway. The koala suffered a torn nail during the ordeal.
    An adorable little koala survived an amazing high-speed ride by clinging to a car for 54 miles on an Australia highway. The koala suffered a torn nail during the ordeal.
  • FWC: Lionfish need to be removed from Florida waters

    FWC: Lionfish need to be removed from Florida waters

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 10:48 AM EDT2014-07-29 14:48:07 GMT
    Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is changing management rules of invasive lionfish to remove them from state waters. Lionfish was introduced to state waters in the 1980s, and since then, populations have boomed in recent years, negatively impacting native wildlife and habitat, the FWC says.
    Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is changing management rules of invasive lionfish to remove them from state waters. Lionfish was introduced to state waters in the 1980s, and since then, populations have boomed in recent years, negatively impacting native wildlife and habitat, the FWC says.
  • Most Viewed Stories on WFLA.com

  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.