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Broward County school bus driver accused of falling asleep behind wheel

Parents say driver stayed assigned to same route for days after incident

WESTON, Fla. – A Broward County school bus driver is being investigated after allegedly falling asleep behind the wheel.

Students on the bus said the incident happened Wednesday in Weston. Since then, several parents have reported it to the school district and are concerned about how it could have ended differently.

Belen Jervis told Local 10 News that her son, a sixth-grade student who attends Falcon Cove Middle School, told her about the incident at the end of the day, and she almost couldn't believe it.

"(He said,) 'Mom, today I almost died on the bus.' And I was, like, 'What?'" Jervis said. 

Jervis's son and dozens of other students on the bus said that, as they were driving along State Road 84, between Glades Road and Indian Trace, the bus suddenly started zigzagging and then careened off the road and into the grass.

"They were, like, 'She (fell) asleep and we screamed and she woke up!' And I mean, there's not like two, three kids. All the kids saw this," Jervis said. 

The children said the bus driver was able to get back on the road safely. But the incident left the students pretty shaken up.

Jervis posted about the incident on Facebook and received several comments from parents whose children had told them the same story.

Belen Jervis says her son, a sixth-grade student at Falcon Cove Middle School, was on a school bus when the driver fell asleep behind the wheel.

One woman even said she saw it happen and confronted the driver, but the driver denied it.

Local 10 News reporter Ian Margol was at the bus stop Monday afternoon and tried to get the driver to tell him what had happened, but she wouldn't speak to him.

Jervis contacted the school district. She said the district got back to her quickly and asked for more information. But, she said, the driver had been behind the wheel every day since the incident happened. 

"It's one thing to have a nice response, and they were very educated and everything, but we need results," Jervis said. 

Broward County Public Schools released a statement Monday to Local 10 News, saying the driver has been reassigned pending an investigation.

"Broward County Public Schools takes all matters concerning student safety very seriously," the statement read. "The primary goal of our transportation department is to provide safe and efficient transportation for students to and from school. The transportation department is aware of an incident involving a Falcon Cove Middle School bus. Transportation staff responded immediately to concerns and followed proper protocols. The school bus operator has been reassigned to other duties in the transportation department with no contact with students, pending a review and investigation."

About the Author:

Ian Margol joined the Local 10 News team in July 2016 as a general assignment reporter. Born in Miami Beach and raised in Broward County, Ian is thrilled to be back home in South Florida.