Floyd County has its share of dangerous drivers on the roads: Those who venture over the center line on turns, drive 15-to-20 miles per hour over the speed limit, fail to turn on their lights in the rain or a dusk or dawn and those distracted by talking on cell phones while hurtling down the highway.
But the dangerous drivers who scare me the most are some who drive the school buses that take our children to and from the county’s five schools.
I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve watched a school bus run the stop sign at Barberry Road and East Main Street in Floyd. Sometimes, three or four school buses in a row will run the sign without pausing. Last week, I had to brake hard and bring my Wrangler nearly to a stop when a bus pulled out onto Main Street without stopping.
I’ve clocked school buses running at 55 miles per hour or higher in the section of U.S. 221 north of Floyd where the speed limit is 45. Some of them start speeding up as soon as they pass Floyd Pharmacy and hit 50 in the 35 mph zone. Recently, I followed a school bus on the dirt section of Sandy Flats Road that runs between Shooting Creek and Harvestwood. I was running 35 and the bus pulled away easily on the narrow, rutted, dirt road.
I’m sure most of the operators of the county’s school bus systems are careful drivers who consider the safety of the children they ferry to and from school. But we have some hot dogs who drive dangerously and it is only a matter of time before some of our children are killed or mangled by their irresponsible actions.