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How much? School district explains cost of driving school buses

Published: Aug. 20, 2015 at 12:20 PM CDT|Updated: Jan. 18, 2016 at 12:21 PM CST
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DPS says motorists who pass stopped buses can face up to $1,250 dollar fines.
DPS says motorists who pass stopped buses can face up to $1,250 dollar fines.
Lindale ISD said they spend $25,000 per month on gasoline for its 55 school buses.
Lindale ISD said they spend $25,000 per month on gasoline for its 55 school buses.

You're probably seeing those big yellow buses driving around East Texas as drivers get ready for school next week. At least one district says they've added new routes to match their growing student population.

KLTV had a chance to go on a ride along in Lindale, and crunch the numbers on everything from the number of tires to gallons of gas to how many miles they're driving around the district.
The dedicated drivers in Lindale say while they're practicing their routes this week, what they're looking forward to is when the seats fill up next week.
"This time of year seeing the excitement on the kids when they first get on the bus especially the little ones who are excited to ride the bus," driver Ron Hayes said.

Lindale just added another route, now up to 32, and they're expecting to transport nearly 1500 kids over 212,000 miles in the coming year. For all those routes, ranging from 21 miles to a whopping 105 miles , monitors ride along keeping kids and drivers safe.

"They are just our right hand person because while we're driving the bus, we don't have to worry about being distracted by the kids or other things," driver Jennabeth Kelly said.
Hayes added those distractions eventually subside.
"It gets peaceful after a while, the first couple weeks in the school it's hectic but after that it's pretty routine," Hayes said.

Another routine is filling-up the 100-gallon tanks: something Lindale says costs $25,000 every month. but it's not just the upkeep of vehicles. Kelly explains that everyone else on the road needs to watch for buses and kids.

"The parents need to watch for our reds and our stop signs, most of our buses have stop signs. and they really need to watch their speed in school zones and you know there's just a lot of things that can happen regarding a school bus," Kelly said.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, motorists who pass a stopped bus can face fines up to $1,250.

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