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County road conditions make for safer school bus travel

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DANNY IVISON
Ellis County Press
PALMER - According to Chad Blankenship, Director of Operations, Palmer Independent School District, the conditions of the county roads in the district are contributing to the safety of students and keeping bus maintenance down.

Among Blankenship's responsibilities is oversight of the transportation in the district. 

'I want to say something about the county roads,' Blankenship said. 'The article in the Ellis County Press last week was kind of negative.'

'County roads are better than they have ever been for us,' Blankenship said.

'Halley (Robinson, County Commissioner, Precinct 1) has done everything possible to make our routes safer and better for us to drive on.'

'I am saving thousands of dollars a year just on shocks, exhaust and suspensions on our buses because the roads are in such good shape compared to what they used to be. That is making our buses safer, our routes safer,' Blankenship said. 'We used to drive down the road and they would beat the exhaust and shocks off the bus.'

The Ellis County Press ran an article last week questioning the safety of the one-lane bridges in the county.

'The one lane bridges are bad,' Blankenship said. 'But, Halley (Robinson) has repaired some for us and took them out for us. They have taken the old wooden one-lane bridges out and put in big metal tinhorns. They have replaced the bridges on Palmyra and McKeever roads.'

'The county is really helping our district out,' Blankenship added.

'It's a shame that the state doesn't help us out like the county by keeping up the state roads,' Blankenship said, referring to low overhanging branches on FM 813.

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