Resources Maintenance Related Articles Atlanta-Area District Survives Deep Freeze
Atlanta-Area District Survives Deep Freeze PDF Print E-mail
Written by Janna Smeltzer   
Friday, 23 January 2009 00:00
JONESBORO, Ga. — Atlanta could not escape the recent deep freeze affecting much of the nation, but foresight by a local school transportation department kept the yellow buses running on schedule and the children in school.

“We are fortunate in the Southeast in that we don’t have to deal with frigid temperatures on a continuous basis, but thanks to careful planning and an excellent maintenance staff, we experienced very few obstacles,” said John Lyles, the transportation director at Clayton County Public Schools, located in the Atlanta suburb of Jonesboro.

Last week, the district implemented its “Cold Start” program, which includes early arrivals for transportation team members and decentralized maintenance response teams. With overnight and early-morning temperatures dipping to 12 degrees on Jan. 16, the drivers and monitors were asked to arrive at their school buses 30 minutes earlier than their scheduled arrival time, some as early as 5:30 a.m., to ensure they did not experience any problems related to dead batteries or frozen fuel lines. Clayton County transports more than 30,000 regular route students and 1,200 special needs students each day, and it employs approximately 407 drivers and 105 monitors.

“We also strategically placed our fleet maintenance mechanics around the county to increase response time to areas of concern,” Lyles added. “When the school bell rang, we were happy to report that, out of more than 400 buses, we only experienced two late bus arrivals. And those buses reached the school approximately one minute behind schedule.”

The district also offers parents and students a real-time bus schedule online.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 21 October 2009 17:07