HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. - A group of mothers are calling on the Hillsborough County School District in Florida to get rid of the bus driver who was caught on video typing on her cell phone while driving a bus full of kids.
Our sister station, ABC Action News first aired the video earlier this week and shared it with the school district. One day later, they pulled the driver who we now know is Melody Lang.
The video, shot by a student on the bus, appears to show Lang texting. The district has placed her on non-bus duty while they investigate.
Lang has not yet been suspended or fired.
"I don't think she should be getting paid," said Kelli Stewart, whose three kids ride the bus that Lang drove, before a new driver took over this week.
"I just think there needs to be a stronger reaction, and consequence to know that this is not going to happen again, because it's serious business and thankfully nobody was hurt," she said.
Stewart and other mothers say they have called and complained about Lang several times since the start of school about her picking kids up late, being rude, and one time when the kids said the bus reeked of cigarette smoke.
"She's endangering our children -- our children that are the future of this country. I'm sorry, but that's not OK with me as a parent," said Dianne O'Brien, who finally received a call back about her complaints this week after the video of Lang was brought to the district's attention.
The district would not reveal how many complaints Lang has on her record because it's part of the investigation.
She's been employed with the schools since 2007 and earns more than $15,000 a year.
We stopped by Lang's house Friday afternoon, but no one answered the door. Her mother told us her attorney advised her not to say anything.
"If it's against their policy, she should no longer have a job," O'Brien said.
If nothing else, the concerned parents hope this case -- that is now getting national attention -- will underscore the responsibility bus drivers hold in their hands.
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