The Iredell-Statesville Schools is investigating an incident in which a school bus drove through standing water on Thursday, according to officials. No one was reported as injured in the incident.
The schools were dismissed early on Thursday as a result of the inclement weather and the forecast for heavy rains and worsening conditions throughout the remainder of the day.
Iredell-Statesville school bus 312 out of Troutman Elementary drove through standing water in Ridge Creek subdivision, located off of Clontz Hill Road in Troutman, sparking the investigation.
Prior to leaving the elementary campus, school administration assigned an additional adult monitor to ride each bus in an effort to more closely monitor weather and road conditions, according to a news release from the school system.
The bus entered into the neighborhood, which has only one way in and one way out, at 11:34 a.m., an official states, outlining the following series of events:
After dropping off students in the neighborhood and prior to exiting the neighborhood, there was a significant change to the water level on the roadway. The driver called the principal, and asked for advice. The bus sat for several minutes as a decision was made about exiting the neighborhood. After discussion among three adults and watching multiple other vehicles drive through the area without incident, the driver was directed by her supervisor to exit the neighborhood. The bus drove through the water at 11:51 a.m.
The district does acknowledge that drivers are trained to not drive through water unless it is an emergency, the district states. After completing a review of the situation, the district will determine further action.
Superintendent Brady Johnson reported that all students returned home safely today.
"Inclement weather calls are extremely difficult and complex. We do acknowledge that is very disruptive, but these decisions are made with the facts that we have at the moment, and with the best interest of the students in mind. We appreciate everyone's patience and understanding as we navigate these difficult decisions."