Parents furious after bus driver leaves students at convenience store

Parents furious after Gaston County bus driver leaves students at convenience store

GASTONIA, N.C. — Students in Gaston County say their bus driver dropped them off at a convenience store Tuesday afternoon.

Ty Hildreth, 15, told Eyewitness News anchor Liz Foster he was already worried about his bus driver’s driving.

“She was just driving all over the road,” he said.

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Hildreth had gone to Forestview High School for a half-day to retake a test. He was one of about seven students on the bus to go home. Almost an hour later, he and several others still had not made it home.

“I told her where I live and she said 'I’m not taking you there, that’s too far,'" Hildreth said. “I was like 'why are you not taking us there?' She said it was just too far, she’s hungry. She said she’d been driving since 6, she’s tired.”

Hildreth says the driver then told the kids she would take them back to the school – or drop them off at this convenience store – a half-mile from the school. Ty says he and two girls, got off at the store.

“I didn’t want to drive anymore with her, be on that bus,” Hildreth said.

His parents were in disbelief.

“I couldn’t believe it. I’m just worried about him being on the side of the road at a store. Anything could’ve happened at that store, from a robbery to a fire, to anything,” Ricky Hildreth said.

Hildreth’s mother called the school and says she was told she was the fourth parent to complain.

A school district spokesperson told to Channel 9 the school will use a different bus driver and said:

"Our transportation and human resources departments will be addressing this situation with the school and the bus driver.”

“You don’t just drop kids off anywhere and tell them to get out... alright, get out… so I was just, I was furious with it,” Ricky Hildreth said.