School bus driver caught going 106 km/h with children on board

A school bus driver in the Ottawa Valley is facing stunt driving charges after police say they drove more than 40 kilometres per hour over the speed limit with children on board.

An OPP officer spotted the driver travelling at 106 km/h in a 60 km/h zone around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday on Micksburg Road in Laurentian Valley Township, police said in a news release.

The 54-year-old bus driver’s licence was suspended for 30 days and the school bus was towed and impounded for two weeks.

“Children were present on the bus and alternative transportation was arranged for the students,” police said.

The bus driver is charged with racing a motor vehicle and speeding under the Highway Traffic Act. They were issued a summons to appear in Pembroke provincial offences court.

Stunt driving charges used to apply to drivers caught going 50 km/h or more over the speed limit, but the province lowered the threshold to 40 km/h over in July 2021.

Upper Ottawa Valley OPP Const. Shawn Peever told CTV News the driver was stopped on a road that is known as a corridor for speeders.

"Our officer was in the area due to complaints with regards to speed concerns, especially at school pick up and drop off times and that was the result yesterday," he said.

The Renfrew County Joint Transportation Consortium said the bus was not operating for them or serving Renfrew County District School Board or Renfrew County Catholic District School Board Schools. 

We are aware of media reports circulating involving a school bus driver facing stunt driving charges. We have confirmed that this was NOT a bus operating for @RCJTC_Trans , @RCDSB or @RCCDSB.

— RCJTC (@RCJTC_Trans) May 4, 2022

CTV News has learned the driver was driving students from a French school in the area, under the Ottawa School Transportation Consortium. It's unclear which school the children on the bus attend.

Area school bus driver Simon Brooks said it's uncommon to see a school bus moving that quickly.

"Couldn't believe, because these guys don't move that easily. So 106, that's a good rate," he said.

But residents are not impressed.

"It's unacceptable, as far as I'm concerned, especially with kids still on board," said Pierre Dube, who was picking up his grandkids.

"You put your children or grandchildren's lives at risk," Dawn Dube said. "You hopefully put them on a bus and know that they're going to be safe and get home or to school safely. And then you hear this and it's totally irresponsible."