“Zero tolerance” bus inspections took whole schools’ fleet out

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

LEBANON – After Indiana State Police shut down one school bus company’s entire fleet in the middle of the school day, Fox 59 followed inspectors to learn more about the safety of your kids’ buses.

This week, 25 buses owned by A & S Transportation failed an inspection. It left kids waiting hours to get home from the three Indianapolis charter schools the company serves.

Fox 59 followed inspectors during a check in Lebanon.

Sgt. Chris Kath, who runs the State Police inspections, said A & S knew they were being inspected, but did not have their mechanic check and document the brakes and steering.

“We’re extremely strict when we do it, because it’s the safety of the children,” Kath said.

This year, State Police have inspected close to 16,000 buses. Of those, a little more than 12,000 passed inspection, giving the state a 77% passing rate.

You can view inspections online, right down to your child’s specific bus.

Buses must be inspected annually. If a bus is at least 12 years old, it must be inspected semi-annually.

In Lebanon, three buses needed those semi-annual inspections and each of them passed.

Kath said that because of the issue with A & S Transportation this week, the company is now subject to random checks to be sure they’re keeping up with maintenance.

“You might as well throw the whole inspection out if we just overlook something,” Kath said.

To view school bus inspections by district, go to https://secure.in.gov/ISP/BusInspections/Public/Index.