Asheville, NC -- New Technology is revving up school districts' efforts to improve bus safety and efficiency.
Now they can track everything from driver behavior to engine performance.
Anything is possible on a school bus; delays, engine problems, accidents. But with new technology, some of those issues can be prevented. Buncombe county schools recently installed tracking devices in each of its 262 buses.
The program officially rolled out last month.
With just a few clicks, transportation director, Joseph Hough, can monitor the location of every bus in the fleet from inside his office. Another click shows Hough if the driver is following the rules. For example, what speed they're going, if they came to a complete stop, opened the door, and used the hazard lights when crossing the railroad tracks; something that's required by law.
Hough says that helps him hold drivers accountable.
Buncombe county is one of 13 school districts across North Carolina using the system.
While parents cannot access the information, officials at each school can. They will be able to provide accurate information without having to call the bus drivers.
In the meantime, Hough plans to study the information generated by the program to find out how much time and money it saves. The new technology isn't free. Buncombe County Schools pay 36 dollars per bus, per month to cover its fleet.