School bus driver forced ‘scared’ boy, 11, to walk home in the rain

‘Jobsworth’ school bus driver forced ‘scared’ boy, 11, to walk home in the rain after throwing him off ‘because he was too cold to get his pass out of its see-through plastic holder’

  • Sam Storey had to ask several neighbours if they could give him a lift to school
  • His hands were too cold to get the bus pass out of its plastic wallet
  • Stagecoach said it was ‘sorry’ that Sam ‘did not feel he could travel’ with the company

Sam Storey (pictured) was forced to walk home in the pouring rain after a ‘jobsworth’ bus driver refused to let him on the bus as he was unable to take his bus pass out of its plastic wallet

A scared 11-year-old boy was forced to knock on the door of three sets of neighbours to persuade them to give him a lift to school, after a ‘jobsworth’ bus driver booted him off the bus because he was unable to present his bus pass.

After waiting patiently for the 519 service to his school in Kent, Sam Storey was forced to walk home in the rain after the bus driver told him he was not allowed to travel, as he had been unable to remove his bus pass from its clear plastic holder, due to the cold and wet weather.

Despite his photo ID being clearly on display, Sam was told he was taking too long to scan the card, so he had to get off the bus. 

Sam had struggled to remove the pass from its holder as his hands were too cold.

When Sam arrived home, he had found his parents had already gone to work, he then had to knock on his neighbours’ doors until he was able to find one was able to take him the three miles to Towers School in Ashford, Kent.

His furious mother Cassie (corr) Storey, 42, branded the driver ‘beyond a jobsworth’ and filed an official complaint with bus company Stagecoach as soon as Sam got home from school, on Thursday November 1st.

Mrs Storey, who works in social services, said: ‘If he wasn’t allowed on because he didn’t have his bus pass I’d understand.

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Sam (pictured), who is 11-years-old said: ‘I was shocked and worried because I wanted to go to school and didn’t know what to do’

‘But the fact he was in that weather, he’s small, he’s wet, it’s only his first term and the driver could see his pass, but still wouldn’t help him, just makes me question who would do such a thing.

‘Sam’s so conscious about getting to school on time that it upset him.

‘What if no-one had been there to take him to school? I dread to think what would have happened if a less able child had been treated like this.’

Sam’s mother Cassie Storey said that the incident had upset Sam (pictured) as it is only his first term at school

Sam left home at 8am on Thursday to catch the school bus with his pass, which cost his parents £145 for six months, and was ‘soaking wet and cold’ by the time it arrived, later than scheduled.

Mrs Storey said: ‘He wears his bus pass in a see-through plastic lanyard around his neck, that also contains his school dinner pass.

‘His hands were very cold that morning and he was struggling to get his pass out of the plastic sleeve. His friends all got on the bus and went to sit down.

‘My son showed his pass and explained to the driver that he couldn’t get it out of the lanyard and asked if he could help him.

‘The driver said ‘no’ and told him to get off the bus. Shocked and upset, my son did this.

‘He then returned home in the pouring rain, but my husband and I had already gone to work.

‘He then tried three sets of neighbours, eventually finding someone that was in and who fortunately took him to school.’

Sam was travelling to Towers School in Ashford Kent (pictured), his parents pay around £145 for a six-month service for Stagecoach to get him to the school on time

She added: ‘Both his father and I work where we are not always able to answer our phones, and therefore dread to think what would have happened if he had been left to wander the streets.

‘We pay £145 for a six-month service and put our trust in Stagecoach that they will get our son safely and on time to school each day.’

She said Sam had continued to get the bus to school every day since without a problem, but said he had not seen the driver who refused to let him travel.

Sam said: ‘Obviously I was shocked and worried because I wanted to go to school and didn’t know what to do.

Sam’s bus pass was visibly inside the plastic wallet but the driver had insisted that he remove it before getting on the bus

‘I was lucky to find someone, but my schoolwork was soaked, we even had to chuck some in the bin.

‘If it had happened to someone of a younger age, or if they had autism, or if someone had taken it differently, they could’ve got really stressed out or worried.

‘If it had been on a normal day that would’ve already been bad, but you should never leave a child out in the pouring rain.’

A Stagecoach spokesperson said: ‘We were very concerned to hear this.

‘We expect our drivers to make decisions best on the welfare of the customer involved.

‘We are looking into the exact circumstances and we are very sorry that on this occasion this passenger did not feel he could travel with us.

‘We will review what happened in this case and ensure any lessons are learned for the future.’ 

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