On the first day back to school, a Decatur bus driver is begging other drivers to be careful, and to never pass a stopped school bus.
He said it happens far too often, and he hopes his message changes the trend this school year.
“I can’t understand why people can’t see this big, yellow bus," Tommy Brown said.
Brown started driving school buses in Decatur more than a decade ago. He told WAAY 31, while there have been a lot of changes in that time, one thing remains the same: drivers pass school buses that are picking up or dropping students off.
In fact, he said he counted 42 people who passed him last school year alone.
“Some of them have their own kids on those buses," Brown said. "Why in the world would they want to get close to it?”
Brown told WAAY 31, over the years, he’s had five really close calls, where a child was almost hit by a passing car.
“They came right up to them, within inches of hitting my kids, and that is very scary."
He said there's one excuse that most people tend to use when they get caught doing something like this.
“‘I’m late for work.’” Don’t worry about that," he said. "Just a few minutes. A life is not worth that.”
Brown believes there’s a solution to the problem.
“Our government said they were going to try and get cameras on the outside of the buses. I wish they would," he said. "Some of ours have cameras on the outside and they’ve got you.”
In the meantime, Brown is begging drivers to just be cautious.
“It is so dangerous out there. Please watch for these buses.”
It is illegal to pass a school bus while they are loading or unloading students.