Harrisburg, PA – Under sunshine and blue skies, professional school bus drivers from across Pennsylvania competed in the 41st Annual Pennsylvania School Bus Driver Safety Competition. This year’s event took place on June 23 and June 24 at the Mount Nittany Middle School in State College.
A total of 90 drivers from across Pennsylvania competed in this year’s competition (73 conventional and 17 transit drivers). The top public and private driver in each category earn invitations to compete in the International Competition in Indianapolis on July 15.
Drivers and competition judges arrived on Friday evening for an orientation and the driver’s written examination. On Saturday morning, under Sunny skies, the drivers competed in the skills competition which included physical and verbal bus inspection; height judgement; diminishing clearance; simulated bus stop; railroad crossings; backing up; and curb line parking.
When the scores were tallied, the results showed that the following drivers would represent Pennsylvania at the International School Bus Safety Competition:
Shanon O’Brien – Shanon drives for Krapf School Bus, West Chester (Chester County). She resides in Downingtown (Chester County) and is a repeat champion having finished first in last year’s competition.
Larry Hannon, Sr. – Larry is a driver for the Centennial School District, Warminster (Bucks County). Larry has finished first in numerous state safety competitions and is a nine-time champion of the international competitions. Larry resides in Hartsville (Bucks County).
Cheryl Vogelsang – Cheryl drives for Eagle Wolfington located in Exton (Chester County). Cheryl, a resident of Downingtown (Chester County) finished in 2nd place in the transit category moving up three spots from 2016 to earn a trip to Indianapolis. Cheryl is a resident of Downingtown (Chester County).
Ted Dubbs – Ted is a driver for the Lower Merion School District (Montgomery County). Ted is a resident of Collingdale (Delaware County). Ted finished with the top transit score this year and placed third in last year’s state competition.
“PSBA congratulates all the drivers who trained for the competition and we wish good luck to our state representatives who will be competing at the international competition,” said Dallas Krapf, Chair of the Safety Competition Committee, “ I want to also thank all of our volunteers who are pivotal to the success of this event.”
All four Pennsylvania drivers finished among the top ten in this year’s School Bus Driver International Safety Competition. In the conventional category, Larry Hannon drove to a second place finish and Shanon O’Brien finished in ninth place. In the transit category, Ted Dubbs placed third with Cheryl Vogelsang close behind in a tie for fourth place.
“The International Safety Competition recognizes the school bus driver top performers from across the nation,” noted PSBA President Fred Bennett, “The Keystone state is proud to count our competitors among the elite again this year.”
The complete results of this year’s Pennsylvania competition can be found on the PSBA website at www.paschoolbus.org.