DeKalb County School buses have passed state inspection. Bus drivers were also tested and have been recertified.
State Trooper Darryl Winningham of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, inspector for this district, completed his evaluation this week (January 13-16) of all the buses in the fleet including the substitute buses.
"We've got 37 buses on route and four sub buses and everything has passed inspection with the state that is in service. It's been a long four days but they inspected all buses from front to rear including every switch, every air line, every fan motor, every light, and I'm proud to say that DeKalb County's buses are safe. We passed 100%. There were some simple things found that were wrong such as light bulbs and we had one exhaust leak but all of that was fixed on the spot and there were no reinspections. The state passed them. Again, we have 42 buses in the fleet counting our band bus that hauls the band equipment and we have a shuttle bus we use. Thirty seven buses are on route and we have four buses that are used as sub buses, two handicapped buses and two class-D regular route 90 passenger buses that are substitute status," said School Transportation Supervisor Jimmy Sprague in an interview with WJLE Friday.
"I do a level one inspection. I go from the front to the back and top to bottom from checking the tire tread depth to checking brakes, pads, rotors, and drums. I check the seats to make sure they are secure. I check the air pressure on the brakes to make sure it holds pressure and that there are no air leaks. I check every light inside and outside the bus. Anything that has to do with the safety of the bus, we check it. We've been here for four days this week and I usually inspect eight to ten buses a day. When we leave everything will be up and in service, running well," Trooper Winningham told WJLE
"In this inspection, we found minor headlight, brake light, running light (deficiencies). They could have happened on their way in here today. Most things were a simple fix. Everything was fixed as we went. We didn't find anything that runs the route that should be out of service. Our job is to maintain a level of inspection on the bus to keep it safe for all the children. We're not here to put them out (of service) we're here to keep them up. That's our whole purpose here to inspect them to make sure they are safe and ready to pick up a child," said Trooper Winningham.
On Friday, the bus drivers tested for recertification. "We did recertification of our drivers and I'm proud to say that all of our drivers are recertified with an endorsement through the state. Nobody failed," Sprague concluded.