Washington County GPS Buses

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As the wheels on the bus go round and round, school district officials in Washington County now have to ability to know exactly where those wheels are going.

Bill Lee, Transportation Coordinator, says, "We are able to track all drivers and all routes every morning and every afternoon when buses are running."

Bus drivers can now be tracked by a new GPS system that was purchased with a grant from the Department of Homeland Security.

"In this time of rising cost of fuel and trying to watch every dime we thought it would give us an opportunity to try to be more efficient in setting our bus routes and mapping them out and determining where we need to make stops."

And when a driver puts too much pedal to the metal, "We do have the ability to track the speed in a real time basis. Even so we can see where a bus was at a particular time and stopped and determine whether they were on time or made a stop."

Drivers say they don't mind big brother looking over their shoulder because the system is something everybody will benefit from.

Bonnie McSwain, a bus driver, says, "Number one, it keeps bus drivers honest because it tracks your speed. It's safer. If we got stuck somewhere, they could track us and see where we are and come save us."

The GPS system will also be used in times of emergency evacuation because the school bus system is the county's only mode of mass transportation.