• Lake County Schools looking for solution after new bus radios aren't reaching standards

    By: Michael Lopardi


    LAKE COUNTY, Fla. - School officials in Lake County are seeking solutions after they said some of the new radios on school buses aren't working as well as projected.

    Hundreds of buses have brand-new radios, but the radios aren't working as well in some areas with a weak signal.

    "It's not that the system is less adequate or not adequate to be able to work, it's just not reaching the goals we projected," said safety and security director Jimmer Roy.

    Roy explained that some calls drop or don't go through at all because of the weak signal.

    The radios are imperative for bus drivers to share information and call for help since they are not allowed to use their cellphones behind the wheel.

    Because of the issues, Roy told Channel 9 that the vendor is now providing drivers with 100 handheld radios at no extra cost, which utilize a cell signal.

    "This was a hiccup," said Lake County School Board Member Bill Mathias. "I think it's all about recovery and I think the vendor did an amazing job with recovering and getting our communication with our buses taken care of very quickly."

    Officials believe that the issue derives from some of the district's towers not being high enough to clear the treeline in the north and southwest parts of the county. 

    The district is trying to work out an agreement in a month to use three of the county's towers, which are much taller and expected to improve service.

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