RFSD apologizes for poor communication about traffic delay | PostIndependent.com

RFSD apologizes for poor communication about traffic delay

This is one of several vehicles involved in accidents Wednesday morning on Highway 82 between Glenwood Springs and Carbondale. This truck was off the road at the base of Red Hill just upvalley from Highway 133.
Will Grandbois / Post Independent |

The Roaring Fork School District apologized to parents Wednesday after buses had long delays because of multiple accidents on Highway 82 between Glenwood Springs and Carbondale that morning.

Icy roads caused backups during rush hour, but only one accident involved injuries that required someone to be taken to the hospital, the Colorado State Patrol said. That accident occurred about 7:45 a.m. near the Carbondale/Highway 133 turnoff, according to Trooper Joshua Lewis.

Several accidents involving one or two vehicles occurred along the 10-mile stretch of Highway 82 starting around 6:30 a.m., he said. None of those involved injuries.

Several of the accidents were in the vicinity of the Orrison Distributing warehouse, where a traffic light malfunction at the Ironbridge/Westbank intersection exacerbated the problem. Traffic was at a near standstill for about 90 minutes as a result.

The backup resulted in some RFSD buses being significantly delayed in picking up students for school, RFSD officials explained in an email to parents issued Wednesday evening.

“This situation is a rare occurrence and was certainly a surprise to all of us,” Superintendent Diana Sirko and Chief Operating Officer Jeff Gatlin said in the email. Some parents received a notification alert via Facebook, “but obviously, this was not enough,” they said.

“Ultimately, communication of this event did not occur in an acceptable manner to adequately notify schools and parents about the magnitude of the issue,” they said, adding that new procedures are being developed to improve communications when buses are delayed in the future.

The new policy would cover any situation when a school bus is significantly late in picking up students, they said in the email.

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