It’s not dropping the kids off at school in the morning, or picking them up in the afternoon that’s brought school bus drivers to city hall, it’s what happens in between that’s got city bylaw officers getting out their ticket books.
Drivers of school buses have complained to Coun. Ben Henderson about a rash of parking tickets in the last while.
Henderson has launched an inquiry at city council that will bring some answers later this spring.
“It has been brought to our attention in the past, that school bus drivers who pick up their buses at the garage in the morning and then do their morning run, haven’t been able to leave their buses near their homes to avoid two further trips back and forth to the garage before their evening run after school,” he told council. “This provides savings in time, fuel, wear and tear on the roads and environmental benefit.”
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Jim Kane, the location manager with First Student has two or three tickets a month show up on his desk.
“These are people that are earning, $20, $21 an hour, and for four hours guaranteed a day. A $100 parking ticket is an expensive lesson,” he said. “It makes it tough recruit and hire good qualified people to drive school buses.”
A spokesman for the city said they’re not in a crackdown, the rules have always been this way. Bylaw officers are responding to both complaints, and general patrolling.
It’s currently illegal to park school buses on the street, as the vehicles weigh more than 4,500 kilograms, which violates city bylaws. In Calgary, Hendersen said, bus drivers can leave their vehicles on the street during the day.
City stats show overweight vehicle tickets in the last three years:
2014 – 852
2015 – 1014
2016 – 666
It’s noted that this is for all overweight vehicles and not just school buses because the city doesn’t differentiate between the types of vehicles that get ticketed.