State Member for Wallsend, Ms Sonia Hornery MP, has called for an urgent meeting with the Minister for Transport and the CEO of Keolis Downer following a number of incidents involving school children this week.
On Wednesday this week, a young Waratah school girl was forced off a bus and left on the roadside near Jesmond after the driver was advised by his depot to change the route he was driving mid route.
The distraught and frightened young girl was then forced to walk to find a phone to call her mother who had to leave work to pick her up.
This follows a number of incidents earlier in the week where drivers were forced to skip stops due to late running times, leaving a number of students stranded and unable to get to school.
Quotes attributable to Member for Wallsend, Sonia Hornery
“I have written to the Minister calling for an urgent meeting with Keolis Downer to discuss the ongoing issues with the bus services in my electorate.”
“This latest incident is sickening. A young girl told to get off the bus because the driver had been told by his depot to change the direction of the bus and head off in a completely different direction.”
“My office has had calls from distraught parents who had to leave work to go and collect students Waratah after buses simply drove past passengers because the service was running late.”
“Drivers have told me that the company gets a fine for being late so they are forced to skip stops when they are running behind, even when that involves leaving young school students stranded.”
“This is unacceptable, the level of issues has skyrocketed since Keolis Downer took over the running of Newcastle Buses and I am demanding some answers from the Minister.”