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School buses in Ashwaubenon break down thanks to frigid weather

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ASHWAUBENON, WI (WTAQ) - Ashwaubenon school district officials say nine school buses broke down Tuesday morning, thanks to the frigid morning temperatures in the area.

District officials say all the buses started fine, but at some point stopped. That meant the children on board were at risk - either stuck on the bus or out in the cold.

Officials couldn't say how many students were left waiting in the cold for their bus, or for how long. And because so many buses were affected, the bus company – Lamers – didn't have enough vehicles to relieve the struggling ones. 

Those that did break down did have heat. The students who took the buses that broke down did get to school, but late. 

Parents were notified about the problem, but the district admits the information could've come out sooner.

"We know that we need to get that alert out sooner,” Keith Lucius, Assistant Superintendent with the Ashwaubenon School District, told FOX 11. “Because this is a problem we've never had before, we didn't have a process in place for communicating with parents quickly and have those things ready. We will communicate, if this happens again, much earlier and be much more prepared."

Lucius says it’s believed fuel played a role in the problems. He says the district and Lamers are working to ensure the same problem doesn't happen again.    

The district typically looks at wind chill temperatures as a gauge for closing school - to protect the students. But that, Lucius says, may change if actual temperatures continue to cause mechanical issues.

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