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Parents question why Scott County bus caught on fire

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Posted at 5:55 PM, Oct 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-01 22:27:56-04

SCOTT COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — Some Scott County parents are raising questions about what led up to a school bus fire after a Friday night high school football game.

The bus, which was packed with Scott County High School players returning from a game in Lexington, caught fire on Interstate 75. The players, who were able to escape the bus unharmed, told their parents the bus had trouble moving before the fire and traveled far below the speed limit.

One parent talked to LEX 18 about her concerns but didn't want to be identified.

"He (her son) said that when they got ready to leave the school, the bus started, and it wasn't able to move. So he said the bus driver had to switch the bus off, and he started revving the engine, and then it finally started to move. He said it went really slow in his estimation, it probably didn't go over 40 miles an hour," the mother said.

The mother feels like the fire and their close-call escape could have been avoided.

"I have seen them park for, you know, a parking lot out. They know not to move, any issue. They stop those buses, pull em', get a new bus. This was an obvious major issue that it seems like even the kids were aware of and they still continued to leave Frederick Douglass High School and I'm not sure why they didn't park it," she said.

Alvin Edwards, a truck driver who noticed the fire and flagged down students to get off the bus, noticed the bus moving slowly.

“Now when I come up on it, I’m doing 70 or 75 miles an hour and he was going slow with the hazards on,” Edwards said.

When we asked the school district about the parents’ concerns, we did not receive a direct answer.

"Working in conjunction with the Kentucky Department of Education and the bus manufacturer, we are continuing to actively investigate this incident," said Renee Holmes, spokesperson for Scott County Public Schools.

Scott County school buses have a regular service check every month. The school bus that burned had its last service check on September 7th, according to documents provided by the school district. No problems were reported other than a weather strip that had to be re-glued.

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