School bus drivers responding to deadly accident

Credit: KTVB

School bus drivers responding to deadly accident

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by Karen Zatkulak

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KTVB.COM

Posted on December 6, 2013 at 6:44 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 6 at 6:44 PM

NAMPA -- Just a day after 11-year-old Daniel Cook died on his way to school, his family, his community, and even other school bus drivers are trying to come to terms with the tragedy.

Like so many in our area, drivers across the Treasure Valley are devastated by what happened and were extra cautious as they drove their routes on Friday.

The Brown Bus Company in Nampa flew their flag at half staff today in remembrance of Cook.

It's another sign of just how much the tragic death of the 11-year-old boy is affecting so many.

"My heart sunk because it did happen locally, but it could happen anywhere, to any company," said operations manager Brent Carpenter.

On Thursday, the drivers held a moment of silence, thinking about all those involved in the tragedy.

Carpenter says it's a heart wrenching reminder of the young lives each driver is responsible for each day.

"It can be overwhelming when you think of it in those terms because you have people's pride and joy riding behind you," said Carpenter.

Carpenter says Friday morning drivers were emotional about the crash but took extra time to remember each safety concern they face along their route.

"Out on the road they are taking extra second or two to double check the traffic, double check the things that they maybe have taken for granted," said Carpenter.

We caught up with parents putting their children on the bus Friday morning -- with Thursday's accident still on their minds.

"A little but I trust the bus drivers, they always do their best, there's always a chance whenever anyone goes on the road," said Nampa parent Brad Adams.

Carpenter says his drivers feel a unique connection to what happened Thursday as they drive children on Friday.

"They have that common bond and so I think that's another reason why the drivers feel that tug on their heart even more," said Carpenter.

The Brown Bus Company has 350 drivers who work in the Nampa, Vallivue, and Wilder school districts.

Carpenter tells us on Thursday they sent over drivers to help fill in for those Kuna drivers who were too emotional to drive their routes.

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