More than 20 school bus drivers gathered at the Lamont arena on Tuesday (Jun.19) to take part in Elk Island Public Schools' (EIPS) second annual bus rodeo
 
The event, meant to help bus operators celebrate another successful year of driving, featured an obstacle course that saw drivers completing a series of challenges including a curb pull up, back up and tight pull through.
 
Lisa Weder, director of student transportation at EIPS, said the rodeo gave drivers a chance to socialize as well as practice some tricky driving moves. She pointed out that it takes a lot to be a bus driver in Alberta, especially given the province’s sometimes harsh and unpredictable weather.
 
“The event is a great way to show off the incredible skills our operators possess,” Weder said. “You have to be focused and meticulous to perform these maneuvers well, which is especially challenging when you have to also deal with spirited students and changing road conditions.”

EIPS board chair Trina Boymook got behind the wheel to try out the course as a guest driver, saying afterwards that she’d gained a new perspective on what bus drivers experience on the job.
 
“I applaud our EIPS operators for the work they do every day to get our students to school safely,” Boymook added.
 
EIPS transports more than 9,300 students on 161 buses on 614 routes, with drivers travelling close to 18,000 km every day.

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