Angry parents say new bus stop is dangerous
Photo: Video by fox4now.com
LEE COUNTY: Parents in Lee County fired up tonight, saying the Lee County School District's new bus routes are putting their children in danger. Dozens gathering tonight to voice their concerns, now they want to know how they can stop the new changes from taking effect. Four in your Corner's Mike Mason was at tonight's meeting with a story you will only see on Fox 4.
A letter was sent to parents just 3 days ago telling them their child's bus stop has been relocated. Now parents are outraged and they want officials to take action. Dozens of concerned residents of Cross Creek Estates in Fort Myers showed up to tonight's meeting all to say they're not happy with the location of the District's new bus stop.
Dawn Crowel: "With cars going back and forth I just feel that we are destined for something bad."
For the past 17 years school buses have driven inside their gated community to pick up students, but now school officials have decided to enforce a policy which states buses are not allowed to drive onto private property. So now kids who live at Cross Creek Estates will be picked up along Daniel's Parkway. Parents feel it's an accident waiting to happen.
Dawn Crowel: "It is not safe, if somebody were to come out they would understand that the corner of Cross Creek Boulevard and Daniel's with all that high traffic it is not safe."
The District's transportation director, Robert Morgan, showed up to tonight's meeting, explaining how the District will not be making any exceptions to the rules.
Robert Morgan: "I’m standing here, to stand in front of you to take the hit, I have no negotiations.”
But angry parents say that's unacceptable because their gated community is different than most. Cross Creek Estates is located way behind another gated community called Cross Creek and that means every morning students will have to walk more than a mile just to get to the bus stop.
Mark Geissinger: "To get to the bus stop they would have to walk 2 miles if I wasn't willing to drive them to the bus stop which again will cause another problem out on Daniel's Parkway with a stream of minivans all for the drop-offs and the pick-ups."
School Board candidate Bob Chilmonik told parents all they can do at this point is take their concerns to board members.
Bob Chilmonik: "It needs to be looked at from a safety standpoint and I've recommended a safety audit at the stop, it's high speed traffic going down there and I think it needs to be looked at closer."
School begins next week. Parents say they'll be attending upcoming board meetings to ask school officials to consider an alternative. We'll let you know what happens.