Local school district has been using our driveway as a bus stop for months without our knowledge or consent - Concerns about property rights and liabilities

Local school district has been using our driveway as a bus stop for months without our knowledge or consent - Concerns about property rights and liabilities
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#41

I agree that they’re playing and just “being kids”. But they don’t have permission to play on my property. Like @JoeFriday said, the parents will come after us, not the school district.


#42

That’s actually illegal in my state. Maybe not in yours.


#43

Honestly, I don’t have a general “thing” against school buses. I’m not totally unfamiliar with usual and customary procedures. My kids rode the school bus for many years. I’ve driven behind school buses many, many times. I know they’ve got an important job to do.


#44

Yeah it is ‘illegal’ here. So are a lot of things. I can’t waste my time with small stuff, and I wouldn’t want to waste a cop’s time with it either. I would have asked the bus driver to move and said I would appreciate if they moved the stop back to the corner.

But I applaud you for this thread. It really is the first ‘real’ FWF thread of the FD days.


#45

I understand that it might be small stuff to some people. I do pick my battles, but I have my reasons for picking this to be one of them.


#46

Wait a minute - the bus isnt stopping in front of your house, it’s stopping in front of HER house because she has a kids that is being picked up…

Is the bus pulling into your driveway?


#47

This looks like a great vantage point to take pot shots at the driver. Use a BB or pellet gun, of course, so you don’t seriously harm him. :rofl:


#48

Yet the same risks exist with them congregating at the corner of your lot too. Which you want them to do instead.


#49

No, the bus was stopping at my driveway at my house at the NW corner of the intersection during the 7 AM pickup. The bus approaches from the East traveling due West at 7 AM. Her house is on the SW corner of the East-West street. The bus only travels one way down the street for pickups and another way for drop offs. (Why, I do not know because it didn’t use to be that way.) Everyone has to board and get off on the same side of the street, regardless of what side they live on. Kids on the side opposite of where the bus stops, do have to cross the street. Her kid crossed the street to board the bus and I have 2 videos that prove it. The bus does NOT pick her kid up in her driveway or on her side of the street at all. I can take videos of it each and every morning that would prove it.

The picture I posted of the 3 PM drop off today shows the bus travelling in the opposite direction from the morning pickups. It travels from West to East and drops the kids off at the South corners.

If you have trouble with N,S,E,W, I can say the bus travels from Right to Left in the morning on the Horizontal street and picks up the kids who live on the entire Vertical street, regardless of the side of the Horizontal street they live on, on the top side of the Horizontal street. In the afternoon, the bus travels from Left to Right on the Horizontal street and drops off the kids on the bottom corners of the Horizontal street.

As the picture that I took this afternoon at 3 PM shows, with a vantage point of looking South at the intersection, the bus clearly traveled from Left to Right and stopped at the SE corner, or Bottom Right corner, if you will, to drop the kids off.

The 7 AM bus travels in one direction in the morning. The 3 PM bus travels in a different direction in the afternoon. It carries the same kids from the same street each time.

No offense meant, but I think others in this discussion have understood that perfectly well. And since I live here, I know better than anyone where the school bus has been stopping. You don’t know what you’re talking about.

I can draw a diagram tomorrow if it’s that difficult to understand.

No.


#50

I’ve already explained my position to death. You just seem to want to continue to argue with me for nothing. What is your dog in this fight?


#51

I agree with your husband.


#52

In your district, would you have been obliged to notify the homeowner that you were doing so? Or ask permission? Or advise the homeowner that there might be people congregating in their driveway at certain times and to take greater care at those times when accessing their driveway?


#53

You really need to listen to yourself. You now seem to be bitching about the direction the bus drives down the street. Good lord.

I do not have any problem with understanding the situation. You are complaining how the kid across the street “gets on at your house” when their house, and their driveway, is directly, directly across from yours.

You’ve explained your position in that these kids are trespassing on your property and causing you potential liability for injuries. You continually refuse to explain why having the bus stop 25 ft away, at the corner, resolves any of those issues when it is still your property.

Oh, and because you might have to honk your horn so the kids move if you happen to be leaving while they’re waiting for the bus. And because one day your husband happened to be leaving the house at the exact moment the bus came (depending which way he was heading, he would’ve been waiting just as long had it stopped at the corner).

And you try to equate a car parked along the curb in front of a driveway, to a bus unloading passengers in the road. You might as well bitch about the person walking down the sidewalk is illegally blocking your driveway when they happen to stop to re-adjust their hat in front of your house.

You’ve been told numerous times to take issue with the kids actually going up your driveway towards your house. But that’s it.

Besides, it’s obviously a really huge nuisance for you, when it required some footprints in the snow 6 months into the school year for you to even find out this has been happening in the first place.


#54

Absolutely not. I don’t care which direction the bus drives down the street.

Yes, the kid did get on at my house up until last week. She left her driveway and walked directly across the street into my driveway, until the change was made. That’s my house, not hers. To get on at her house would have meant staying on her side of the street.

Rhetorical question, but do you think that just because our driveways are directly across from each other that they would have the right to park in my driveway and vice versa? After all, according to you, they’d still be parking at their house.

You are so incredibly angry at me for some reason. Everyone else, whether they agree with me or not, has been wonderfully civil. You’re the one who has brought swearing into this. Sad.


#55

The bus is stopping at the exact same spot regardless of which side of the street the kid is getting on from. The EXACT same spot.

Why do you keep equating this with examples of parked cars?


#56

Is on-street parking legal on both sides of your driveway/street? If so, a few well placed vehicles could be used to make it a real pain. Block the end of your own driveway with a few vehicles bumper to bumper and there’s no longer an incentive to stop there if ability to board is blocked. Toss a few cars on the other side of the street and the bus will completely obstruct traffic within the narrow remaining space.


#57

Since there are clearly some people who think I’m a fool and hardhearted, to say the least, I might as well go all out and tell all and let the chips fall where they may.

This isn’t the first time our driveway has been used as the school bus stop. The only difference is that before, it was with our permission. And it was incredibly short-sighted of me to let it happen in the first place.

When we built our house, the development was still a work-in-progress. The East-West street dead-ended at ours. There was no school bus stop here. Most neighborhood kids weren’t of school age yet, including my daughter. The closest bus stop was the next intersection to the West of us.

By the time she was of school age in 2000, the next 2 streets to the East had been put in and the bus was already stopping at those new intersections to pick kids up. They skipped our intersection, I guess, because the parents of the first kid on our street (on the cul-de-sac) to reach school age took him to one of the other intersections.

I called the school district to find out which corner I should take my daughter to. They put me through to the bus driver on our route. She asked me where we lived and she said there was no designated bus stop on our street. But since we’re on the NW corner, she said, “Your driveway is on (East-West) street, isn’t it? I can just pick up your daughter and drop her off right in your driveway. I go by it anyway. You don’t have to take her to the next corner.”

Well, that’s how it started. it was incredibly convenient for me. I didn’t think about what would happen when the other kids on our street started school. For awhile, my daughter was the only kid getting on and off the bus in our driveway. Then, the kid who had been walking to the other intersection started coming to our driveway. Not too big of a deal. I knew him to be a pretty well-behaved kid. It was really just my daughter and him for awhile. The school bus only came at 8 AM and 4 PM and I was out there to keep an eye on things. In the morning on cold days, we’d all stand in our garage with the door open so the kids could stay out of the wind. I’d keep watch for the bus approaching.

Over the next several years, it was my daughter, my son, and several other kids who had become of school age all at the same time, along with their parents, and the toddlers, congregating in my driveway. When I said earlier that it could be as much as 10+ in my driveway, I know firsthand what I’m talking about. I stopped letting people come into our garage at that point.

At some point, the volume of kids in the district getting school transportation got so large, they moved the older kids to a 7 AM pickup/3 PM drop off and kept the 8 AM pickup/4 PM drop off for the younger kids. The same driver came at all times and we had her for several years. I only went outside when I needed to for my kids.

Yeah, they were all over my driveway back then, too. Some of it was the toddlers, who would not keep to the sidewalk. Sometimes we all had to work to keep dragging them out of my vegetable garden, which extended several feet from our house at the time in multiple rows. Some of it was the sheer number of people there. They couldn’t all fit on the sidewalk and, per school bus policy, weren’t supposed to be on the driveway apron for safety reasons. They spilled over north of the sidewalk into our driveway for lack of room.

For a couple of years, I had to be outside for both pickups/drop offs before both my kids aged into the earlier times. At some point, we got a new bus driver and the routine stayed the same.

Then, in January of 2009, with 2 weeks notice, the school district cancelled high school busing because the school levy failed. My daughter was in her first year of high school. My son was 2 years behind her in middle school. Despite the fact that the bus was still going to be coming to pick up/drop off kids in our driveway at both times, my daughter wasn’t allowed to ride the bus anymore. My son would have still been allowed on the bus. It didn’t make sense because the middle school and high school were literally right next to each other. Every other family with a high school kid was in the same boat. I decided to just take both my kids to school.

That created a problem. For 3 weeks, each and every school day, when I needed to get out of the driveway at 7 AM to take my kids to school, there were a few middle school kids in our driveway waiting for the bus. They must have heard our garage door open. They turned around and looked as I slowly backed out of our garage. But instead of moving out of the way, they turned away like nothing was happening. I had to honk my horn to get them out of the way. C’mon, after 3 weeks, that was ridiculous!

I called the school district and reported the problem. I said it was unsafe to have the kids waiting in our driveway now, especially in the dark, when I needed to exit my driveway at the same time to get my daughter to school because of their decision to not allow high school kids on the bus. It didn’t matter that our driveway had been the bus stop for 9 years. They made a change and the bus stop needed to change.

At first, they pushed back and said they didn’t know if they could move the bus stop now. I said then what I said last week. “It’s my private property and if I say you can’t use it, then you can’t.” I called someone in my local government (can’t remember who now) and was told that if the school refused to move the bus stop, to call back and they would get involved. I was told that the school district isn’t allowed to interfere with our ingress and egress of our property, something to that effect. But I didn’t have to get the city involved, because within a couple of days, the bus stop had been moved to either the NW or NE corner.

And that was the end of it, until this school year, I guess. The bus stop was in our driveway for 9 years and at the corner for the next 8 + years. The people in charge of transportation, the bus drivers, and the superintendent are all new, several times over. It’s extremely unlikely that the past use of our driveway had any bearing on someone deciding to use it again.

I was uncomfortable backing down my driveway with kids who wouldn’t move out of the way sensibly. I was angry - as every affected parent was - that my high school daughter wasn’t allowed on the bus anymore on such short notice. It was purely a punishment move because of the levy failure. It felt doubly wrong that she wasn’t allowed on the bus that was using our own driveway for a bus stop.

I was glad to end something that I shouldn’t have allowed to start in the first place that got out of hand as time passed. Now, I don’t feel I can trust them not to do it again someday when I least expect it.

And for anyone who is becoming so angry over reading this, then just stop. Coming back into it again and again to yell at me makes no sense and is just pointless. I didn’t do anything to you.


#58

I love the way you think. :grinning: Yes, street parking is legal. Sadly, not enough vehicles available to do a good enough job of it. If it came down to it, my car parked just to the West of my driveway might cause some difficulty.


#59

I will put up a broader overview of the streets and intersections tomorrow to show you why it’s completely unreasonable for the school district to ever have to use our driveway as a bus stop.

For now, good night all! :sleepy:


#60

“In your district, would you have been obliged to notify the homeowner that you were doing so? Or ask permission? Or advise the homeowner that there might be people congregating in their driveway at certain times and to take greater care at those times when accessing their driveway?”

I am just picking up kids. I see a bunch of kids approximately where they should be, I stop and pick them up. End of story. I think you are over analyzing the job of the bus driver.

If you had a good bus driver, he should have stopped on the correct corner and have the kids come to him on the first day. The kids then would have been at the new location every day. Now they have been trained to go to your driveway.