AUSTIN (KXAN) — A road with a history of fatal crashes is also a popular bus route for two area school districts.
On Tuesday, KXAN reported two more people have died this week while traveling FM 812. Even before those tragedies, roadside memorials sat scattered along the road; five of them in a seven-mile stretch between 130 and Highway 21. Drivers pointed out the road is also surrounded with school children during high traffic times.
“If you came out here at 7 a.m., there are little kids on the side of the road waiting for the bus,” said Daylon Dyess, a driver who travels 812 for work each day.
There are warning signs posted often to warn drivers about upcoming school bus stops, but there is no turn lane and many of the drop-off and pick-up points are homes that sit along FM 812 with no adequate driveway for a bus to pull in and stop. As a result, traffic on the busy and fast one-way in each direction road is brought to stop each time the bus pauses to pick up or drop off.
Jo Rita Wegner is a grandmother who wishes there was a safer way to get her grandchildren to school.
“They are not riding the bus,” she said. “Someone passed them on the right as they were getting off a long time ago and they have not ridden the bus since.”
Both Bastop and Del Valle school buses travel the stretch and KXAN saw school buses pull into subdivisions where possible, but in spots where it is not, parents could be seen waiting at the drop-off point to pick up their children as they stepped off the bus and onto the shoulder of FM 812.
KXAN contacted both Bastrop and Del Valle ISD to see if any safety concerns about the road have been brought to their attention. They said they are checking with their respective transportation departments.