What should have been a simple ride home after school in Lucedale, Mississippi turned heated when the students aboard the bus were left unattended for 15 minutes at a gas station, some of whom got their parents involved.
It is currently unclear why the Central Elementary School bus driver left the bus, though not feeling well has been entertained by some sources. But the bus driver took the bus full of children to an undisclosed gas station, left them for 15 minutes, then returned to complete her route.
The students were uncomfortable and unsure of what to expect during their wait and one student called her mother.
Mother Katie Braigg later stated:
"She calls me, and she’s crying. She says, 'Mom, come get me, I’m scared'."
One student aboard the bus, Ramiro Pruitt, confirmed:
“They were crying and yelling. Some called their parents."
Pruitt's mother, Nicki, later reflected:
“My kids called me, and I couldn’t hear them, there were too many kids screaming in the background for their parents."
Back on the bus route, one student started filming what he could see behind the bus, which was a line of 3 cars following close behind the bus, driven by parents who wanted to get their kids.
At the next stop, the parents attempted to board the bus and take their children home.
The bus driver refused, as it is against the law to allow a minor off of a school bus at any location that is not the determined destination registered at their school. Another student's bus stop is also not acceptable without written permission previously submitted to the school.
The situation quickly turned heated as several students continued to try to get off the bus with the bus driver blocking the doorway and pushing them back onto the bus.
One mother could be heard saying:
"Don't you dare touch my son."
You can watch the video here:
The parents who had arrived continued to argue with the driver about letting their children off and leaving them alone for 15 minutes or more. Several students on the bus also complained and were recording videos of the altercation.
One student could be heard crying for their mother throughout the entirety of the video.
The bus driver started screaming back at the parents and the students, telling them the students had to stay on the bus, she "didn't care" whose parents were present and she was filing her own report about the incident.
The video was shared by Rebel HQ on YouTube, where viewers had a lot to say about the incident.
Some were furious about how the students were treated.
Others thought the driver behaved terribly, but they understood why the students couldn't leave the bus.
Since the incident, the Pruitts have been concerned about what happened.
Mother Nicki Pruitt confided:
“She scared those kids on the school bus, nobody wants to get back on the school bus."
Father Anthony Pruitt added:
“I think they want everyone to be quiet about it and they’re going to brush it under the carpet."
Central Elementary School is reportedly investigating what happened, why the bus driver stopped the bus and how she handled the situation.
Whether or not she will keep her job is unclear, but one thing is certain.
Those students likely won't want to get back on a school bus anytime soon.