ONLY ON 3: North Georgia school bus driver emotionally impacted - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

ONLY ON 3: North Georgia school bus driver emotionally impacted by crash

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DADE COUNTY, GA (WRCB) -

Three school buses involved in a crash in north Georgia nearly a month ago are still sitting waiting to be repaired. 

Seven students and two drivers were treated after the chain reaction crash in Dade County. 

Employee records, obtained by Channel 3, show Terry Giles started working for Dade County Schools as a bus driver and maintenance worker in 2003.

A notice, dated 2011, show supervisors reviewed policy with Giles after he was "holding chewing tobacco for students and allowing them to use it on the bus."

The notice goes on to mention Giles "allowed people to sit on the motor cover, not wearing a seat belt."

Associate Superintendent Billy Hooker said Giles has not had any issues since then.

"One of the biggest issues is going to be discipline on the bus. Every bus driver handles that discipline in a different way. Should there have been dip on the bus? No," Hooker added.

Georgia bus drivers are required to pass a physical, background check and written test before hitting the road.

Drivers must complete a training program and 24 hours of driving with a permit before driving with students on board.

The state also offers yearly training.

"They actually have scheduled training with different concepts that are being taught, any changes, safety issues," Hooker said.

Giles' personnel file does not include any mention of a current driver's license or any training since 2011; but, the school system says that is a record keeping issue.

Hooker said Giles is qualified and licensed to drive a school bus.

READ MORE | UPDATE: School bus driver cited in multiple-bus collision

"We recognize how important the safety of those kids is and so we try to do everything to ensure our parents that we are going to do everything to protect them," Hooker added.

Giles, who was cited for following too close, is back on the road pending a state investigation into the crash.

Giles declined our request for an interview but told us off camera that he takes his job seriously and has been impacted emotionally by the crash.

He, and the rest of Dade County's drivers, will soon receive additional training later this summer.

The three buses involved in the crash will be repaired when insurance costs are worked out.

In an effort to make school buses safer, Dade County School officials added six bus monitors to the routes this year.

There are 19 routes in the county. 

Officials chose the six most difficult routes to put the monitors on which did not include the three buses that crashed.

All special needs buses have monitors.

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