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Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany

Readiness Enabler for Operational Forces  •
Back to school: school bus safety stressed

By Art Powell | | August 6, 2009

For hundreds of school- age dependents living aboard base, summer vacation has come to an end or will soon.

“We have approximately 350-400 school-age dependents of military personnel assigned here. For those living on base, motorists need to be aware that it’s back-to-school time and children will be out waiting for their bus,” said Dana Wallace, education services officer/school liaison, Marine and Family Services, Marine Corps Community Services, Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, Ga. “The first school bus arrives on base at approximately 6:22 a.m. and heads to the housing area to pick up students.”

Buses making their morning routes conclude at approximately 7:30 a.m. Afternoon buses begin at 3 p.m. and finish at approximately 4:30 p.m.

Students living at MCLB Albany have a choice of attending Worth County schools, which began classes Monday, or Dougherty County schools, which began classes Wednesday.

Those residing in Lee County will see the start of classes Aug. 14.

“Dougherty County buses come aboard the base to make their rounds in the housing area each morning and afternoon. Students attending Worth County schools catch the bus in the parking lot adjacent to Building 3010 outside the main gate,” Wallace explained.

Marine Corps Police Department officials stress that it’s important for motorists to recognize the traffic changes brought on by school buses starting and stopping as they make their way through the housing area each morning and afternoon.

“The safety of our service member’s children is of the utmost importance.  The MCPD will be instituting heightened vigilance and safety awareness, placing an emphasis in MCLB Albany housing during the morning and afternoon hours,” said Sean Lamonzs, assistant police chief, Marine Corps Police Department, Public Safety Division, MCLB Albany. “Those who don’t abide by the rules and regulations of the installation could subject themselves to stiff penalties, such as four points assessed to their base driving privileges and up to a 60-day driving suspension.  Remember, safety is everyone’s responsibility.”

Police officials stress that motorists also need to be alert for a bus’s warning lights and mechanical stop sign arm, which signal a stop to all traffic and that motorists need to come to a complete stop when the bus’s warning signals are engaged.

Also, do not proceed until all warning signals stop flashing and the stop sign arm raises.

Safety and common sense also call for motorists to reduce their speed in and around bus stops and school crossings and to follow speed limits within the housing area.

According to information given by Wallace, children may be overwhelmed with new daily routines required for going back to school. And it may be compounded for children who have recently relocated to the base.

Tips for proactive measures to assist children with the new school year include: plan ahead, help a child layout clothes and school materials the night before, make sure a child receives sufficient sleep and get them up and going in plenty of time to prepare for school each morning.

Other tips include making sure a child is aware of their transportation requirements for the end of each school day, making sure they have a healthy breakfast at school or at home and telling them to “have a good day.”

For additional information from Wallace’s office, call (229) 636-7497.

For transportation information, contact individual school systems as listed below. Call Worth County schools at (229) 776-8612 or visit their website at www.worth.k12.ga.us. Dougherty County schools transportation information is available at (229) 431-1265 and online at www.dougherty.k12.ga.us.

Lee County school transportation information is available by calling (229) 903-2212.