School Transportation Director Steve Satterly from Indiana sent me a link to a video clip depicting school buses being devastated by tornadoes on Henryville, Indiana. Steve is becoming quite an authority on school and school bus tornado preparedness as mentioned in previous blogs. He toured the damaged schools in Henryville shortly after the storm hit and took photographs of the schools and damaged buses.
I just viewed the video which appears to have been dubbed with audio of a school bus driver alerting the students on her bus to the tornado that was headed in the direction of their school bus.
While it is impossible to obtain a complete picture of her actions from snippets of audio, I was personally deeply impressed with how calm the driver sounded, how quickly she seemed to take action and by the fact that she can be heard counting the children as they evacuated the school bus. My son and I have often trained more than 10,000 drivers in a single year. We continue to see examples of school bus drivers rising to meet incredible challenges.
I will be keynoting the California Association of School Transportation Officials Annual Conference in Sacramento, California tomorrow morning and I intend to tell the attendees how this is yet another example of a school bus driver performing extremely well under life and death conditions. In my 20 years of work as a police officer, I have heard more than a couple of well-trained law enforcement officers who got more excited on the radio during an emergency than this driver sounded (including perhaps even myself on a few occasions).
Every school bus driver in America should be proud of her actions.