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Child Lost on School Bus for Hours

SOUTHEAST COLUMBUS (Ben Garbarek) -- The first day of school can be hectic for teachers, students and bus drivers, but one mother is pledging to not let her son ride the bus again after he was lost for three hours.

Mimi West said she spent all afternoon calling school officials and eventually police after her 6 year-old son Zion wasn't dropped off at his stop.

"It's been a very trying few hours," West said.  "It was supposed to be an exciting time."

The bus driver said Zion got on the wrong bus, a common mistake for kids on the first day of school.

West said she is upset because school officials weren't sure where he was for hours.

"To not know where your son is after school is over and to have everyone (act) so nonchalantly (is unacceptable)," West said.  "My son knows his address and phone number.  Anybody could have taken him home at any time.  If they had taken the time to ask him, 'what's your phone number', let's call your mother (this could have been avoided)."

School officials said the buses have GPS on them for tracking.  They can see where buses are.

If a kid gets on the wrong bus, they said that makes it tricky to figure out which bus the child is on and where it could be.

Columbus Schools said it's working on a new system so students will have his or her address and phone number on them so a bus driver will know where to go or whom to call in situations like this.

 
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