4-year-old girl left on RPS bus found wandering around Fulton

Posted at 3:51 PM, Feb 23, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-24 01:43:46-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- A four-year-old preschool student who was supposed to be dropped off at Maymont Elementary  School never got off the bus Monday morning, according to Richmond Public Schools officials.

Sources told CBS 6 News that the little girl fell asleep and did not wake up when the driver took the bus home to Richmond's Fulton Hill neighborhood around 9:15 a.m.

Several hours later, officials said the girl woke up and managed to push open the door of the bus. That's when a person who lives in the neighborhood spotted the child in the middle of the road and called police.

Officials said what happened was unacceptable and that an investigation is underway.

"It's not something that should never be tolerated or excepted, and we as a transportation group with RPS our main goal has to be the safe and secure transportation of every student who is assigned to us," Tommy Krantz, RPS Superintendent of Support Services, said.

Officials are also investigating why the driver took the bus home instead of to a bus depot, which is now standard practice for the district.

Also in question is whether an alarm on the bus designed to prevent this type of incident may have malfunctioned.

The driver and attendant have been suspended pending an investigation.

The child, who was not injured, has been reunited with her family.

Watch CBS 6 News at 11 p.m. for an update on this developing story.