CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. – The Chesterfield County school bus driver who ran off the road during a school bus crash Monday on Otterdale Road is no longer employed by the school system, officials confirm.
Ed Stoots lives along the stretch of Otterdale Road and has seen one too many crashes. He even had a friend pass away after an accident on the road.
Monday’s school bus crash next to his home was just the latest.
“It’s these ditches,” said Stoots. “The ditches are so deep. Once you run in that ditch, you’re not going to pull it back out.”
He partly blames the mishaps on how challenging the road is to drive.
“I think it’s a shame and a disgrace that they can’t fix the road, so they can transport kids back and forth without something like this happening,” said Stoots.
Police say a bus driver carrying Grange Hall Elementary school students ran off the right shoulder and got stuck Monday afternoon. A few students had minor injuries.
Off camera, other bus drivers expressed concern that route 3’s driver was on her first solo run with students, in a bus unlike the one she had trained on.
A school spokesperson didn’t confirm that but says drivers must adhere to the legal training requirements in order to drive a school bus.
“I did see the bus driver. She was naturally upset but was real professional, I thought,” said Stoots. “Seemed like she was real concerned about the kids.”
Stoots knows how big parents’ safety concerns are at a time like this. His own son was on a bus when it was hit by an 18-wheeler. That memory never goes away.
That’s why he’s hoping to see changes made on Otterdale Road.
“If they can’t do anything else, fill these ditches up put some stone in it and make a wider shoulder, a level shoulder and do away with the deep ditches,” he recommended.
VDOT officials tell CBS 6 that they are currently working with Chesterfield County’s transportation department to assess the area of Otterdale Road between Genito and Duval Roads to see if they any improvements that can be made.
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