Reporting Mike Xirinachs
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A disturbing threat has sent a chill through the school system and has area school bus drivers on alert.
WCBS 880′s Long Island Bureau Chief With A School Bus Driver In Hicksville
An April 1 email contained threats against school buses and warned of violence in state office buildings and against members of the state legislature, according to officials.
The threat was emailed from an anonymous account to state officials. Though it came in on April Fools’ day, it was being taken quite seriously.
New York State officials have not disclosed whether any specific school bus lines or school districts are mentioned in the emailed threat. School bus drivers were being asked to keep a watch out for unusual behavior along their routes, take extra care to perform pre- and post-trip checks of their buses, and to make sure no unauthorized persons attempt to board their buses.
Atlantic Express Bus Company depot manager Bob Demars said his staff was taking steps to keep children safe.
“Every threat concerns us because we deal with children, and we have to be more cautious – even triple cautious – because they’re very precious,” he said.
In a follow-up letter to school superintendents and administrators Wednesday, the State Education Department said “although law enforcement authorities are treating this threat seriously and continue to investigate, they are not considering this a credible threat at this time.”
New York State Police, State Counter-Terrorism officials, and the FBI were taking part in the investigation. The New York State Education Department sent out letters to school districts notifying them of the threat and precautions that should be taken.
At least two school districts on Long Island, Syosset and Huntington, have already posted a warning on their websites to make sure sure parents and students were also aware of this threat.
“I believe it brings a lot of fear to parents. They should maybe do a meeting, instead of just leave a message like that,” said Gladis White of Syosset, who drove her son to school instead of putting him on the school bus Wednesday.
How seriously do you take this threat? What kind of person would threaten school buses? Sound off in our comments section.