Three Southern Regional Bus Drivers Die, Two from COVID-19, in Recent Weeks



(Picture by Ryan Morrill)
3 Southern Regional bus drivers have died given that mid-December, when the district switched to all-remote instruction, Superintendent Craig Henry confirmed Monday, Jan.11.
“On behalf of the Board of Education and the whole Southern family, I prolong our collective thoughts, prayers and condolences to the family members of our not long ago deceased bus drivers,” he reported. “These motorists were hugely valued and drastically beneficial contributors to the Southern encounter.”
Citing lawful limitations, Henry could not offer the names of the drivers who have died within just the earlier several weeks but did give a several specifics about their fatalities.
One of the motorists underwent an elective surgical process on Dec. 17 and on Dec. 24 passed away adhering to write-up-surgical difficulties, Henry said. The other two motorists passed away because of to COVID-19 difficulties on Dec. 26 and Jan. 10. A single driver’s previous working day driving a district bus was Nov. 19 and the next driver’s previous day of driving a bus was Dec. 15, the district’s final in-person instruction day. The district went on all-remote hiatus setting up Dec. 16.
The two bus driver fatalities from COVID-19 are the only ones to date between the Southern Regional educating and aid personnel, in accordance to the superintendent.
Henry mentioned that even though the district has ongoing to employ some buses to transport Ocean County Vocational-Technical College learners to their respective campuses, as well as to provide foods to students in require through the all-remote interval, none of the 3 drivers had been connected with any of people busing arrangements.
In accordance to the superintendent, no pupils of the motorists influenced by the coronavirus experienced tested favourable for COVID-19 or have been considered “close contacts” at the instances of get hold of tracing. Southern buses go by strict cleansing processes all over the working day, in accordance with the reopening options the district delivered to the county and condition over the summertime.
“From what we know, there was no virus transmission to any college students while these motorists had been driving our buses and none of the occupants of those people buses had analyzed beneficial,” Henry reported. “We’ve managed all our basic safety protocols for as very long as we’ve been bringing pupils to the universities this yr, and we’re normally reminding our staff to defend their zones and be as careful as feasible about what they are doing. Regrettably, any person can get this virus from any where exterior our campus.”
Nonetheless, getting rid of a few customers of the Southern local community in such a limited time hurts, Henry stated.
“Bus drivers are the initially to greet our college students each morning and the previous to say, ‘Have a excellent night and I’ll see you tomorrow!’ at the finish of every single working day,” he said. “All of our transportation staff members are integrally important to what Southern has turn out to be.”
— David Biggy
biggy@thesandpaper.net

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