School bus safety protocols aim to keep students safe in small space

With 36,000 Simcoe Muskoka students boarding school buses, strict health measures are in place to keep them and drivers safe.

There are 720 school buses in operation across the region, which are sanitized twice a day.

"All kids are wearing masks. We are wearing masks and face shields," said bus driver Alissa McCracken.

Students are assigned seats to limit transmission in a small space, with siblings and classmates together.

Simcoe County Student Transportation Consortium's CEO said coordinating seats for thousands of students can be challenging.

"So if there are some that are erroneous, please contact us or the school board, and we'll work to make that right," said John Barbato.

Barbato said they are also dealing with a bus driver shortage in Muskoka that has pumped the brakes on a few routes.

"We have approximately 12 open routes up in Muskoka. They are all being serviced. It's just they are experiencing delays right now, so we are working with our operator to mitigate those delays."

The consortium will review operations, from seating to capacity, to see what changes may be needed.