JCPS 'temporarily ceasing operations' with Commonwealth Bus Service


by WHAS11

Posted on November 8, 2013 at 7:21 PM

Updated Friday, Nov 8 at 7:45 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – The Jefferson County Public Schools system is now taking action after a WHAS11 News investigation our Joe Arnold has been working on for months.

It’s a result of our upcoming special report that airs Monday night at eleven. We've been looking into the crash of a chartered school bus on I-64 in June. Thirty-four people were injured.

Among several revelations in our investigation is the admission by the owner of the Commonwealth bus that crashed, as discovered in these U.S. Department of Transportation documents, that the bus had not had annual inspections in "a few years."

That is a clear violation of the law and of what Jefferson County Public Schools requires of any charter bus company it allows to carry JCPS students.

JCPS is making two major moves.

"We are temporarily ceasing operations with Commonwealth and are reviewing the matter," JCPS spokesperson Ben Jackey said.

In addition, JCPS is going to keep much closer tabs on all charter bus companies it hires for field trips, sporting events and other special trips.

"We will require vendors to submit inspection records for vehicles used to transport our students," Jackey said.

Up until now, every vendor has been required to keep those records subject to JCPS review.  Now those records will have to be submitted to the school district.

Earlier this week, the school district was on record as keeping Commonwealth Bus Service as a vendor. But up until now JCPS did not know WHAS11 knew.

The school district says it had been led to believe that the inspections had been done, but the paperwork had not been retrieved. JCPS says the state never made reference to inspections not being performed by the owner.

But now that they know, as a result of our investigation, they are taking swift action.