Oldham Co. Schools closed Thursday after problems with buses - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Oldham Co. Schools closed Thursday after problems with buses

Oldham Co. Schools closed Thursday after problems with buses

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Oldham County Schools were closed on Thursday after school officials say the bitter cold caused mechanical problems on several school buses.

According to Tracy Harris Green, spokesperson for the school system, there were problems when the diesel gelled. 

"Our bus technicians arrived around 4 a.m. and started all the buses," Green said in a written statement. "At that time, only a few were not starting. However, by 6 a.m., about a third of our buses had stopped running."

"One would work, one wouldn't work, and they eventually were all shutting down because of the temperature," said Chad Neibers, a mechanic with Oldham County Schools. "The fuel was just gelling in the lines and in the filter."

The district's call to cancel classes came around 6:45 a.m., leaving some kids to shiver already standing at cold bus stops.

"We hate to make a decision that late, but we were worried we'd have more kids stranded on a bus if we didn't," Green said.

Symantha Shipp, a student, was spared the chill by a last-minute text from a neighbor -- but the experience was no less frustrating for her parents.

"The cold I don't think should be as much as an issue as when the snow and ice come, because we're just burning up the days for when it really is too bad to go to school," said Kelly Shipp, Symantha's step-mother.

"We believe it is possible the diesel gelled because of the cold, and we are having it tested to see if the fuel was treated properly by the supplier," Harris said in a written statement. "Our concern quickly became that buses would stop running with students on board, leaving buses and students stranded with no heat. Because of that concern, we made the late decision to cancel school."

"I do understand," Kelly Shipp said. "I just feel like they could have been better prepared."

Green said school technicians would be on-site to treat the fuel of every bus so that the buses will run properly on Friday.

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