Long Island Bus Driver Fired After Rescuing 3 Police Detectives During Hail Storm

George Daw, Nassau County Cops Stunned By Educational Bus' Decision

WEST BABYLON, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A Long Island school bus driver was called into his boss’ office expecting commendation. Instead, he said he was fired for helping three police officers stranded in a violent storm — and transporting them in his school bus.

School bus driver George Daw lost his job Monday in a firing flap that began during last week’s freak and violent hail storm. He was quite emotional when he spoke to CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan.

“Who wouldn’t be? It’s crazy,” Daw said.

Daw snapped pictures as a near-monsoon moved through New Hyde Park. Traffic was stopped, cars were submerged and drivers panicked.

Daw finally freed his yellow SUV school bus — with his one single child passenger aboard — amid sudden cries for help from three Nassau County police detectives.

“Do I leave these three police officers, due to company policy?” Daw said. “I didn’t even second guess it. I told the child to jump in the back, these people are coming on board. I had to get them.”

Daw rescued and transported the police officers — their unmarked patrol car was a total loss. He said he continued to home base in Copiague, where he filled out an incident report. But instead of praise, he was handed a notice of termination, which said in part: “Employee endangered welfare of student he was transporting when he picked up three unauthorized passengers.”

It also said: “Employee made decision to drive through large body of water.”

“It’s not like I pulled off the road into a lake trying to endanger somebody’s life. I was caught in a storm,” Daw said.

McLogan asked to speak to Daw’s boss at Educational Bus, but she was told several times there was no one there to speak to her.

The three Nassau detectives and their commanding officer are flabbergasted at the firing.

“We are sorry to hear of any negative consequences that arose from his helping out my detectives,” Detective Lt. Raymond Cote said.

Daw suddenly finds himself unemployed, spending his days at home. He said he’s hoping for his job back, but not expecting his phone to ring.

Daw’s two sons are studying to be police and naval officers. He said if he had the chance to help first responders again, he would not hesitate.

Do you think this punishment is fair? Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below.

More from Jennifer McLogan
  • Wayne D

    One word sums it up ABSURD!

  • juan

    You people are crazy. What if those 3 men were Al-Quida?

    • LTW

      LOLOLOL, you have got to be kidding me!!!!!!!!!! You believe all the BS brought to us by the Gov’t…LOLOLOL

  • Jason

    It’s easy to get righteously indignant because the stranded people turned out to be cops and everything turned out ok with the pickup.

    What if they weren’t police and shot the kid and beat the driver? The same group of you that are angry over the firing would probably blame the driver for breaking the rules when he had a kid on board.

    The problem here is that neither party did the wrong thing. The management, even though lots of you wont admit it, aren’t in the wrong punishing a rule violation. I agree that the punishment is excessive and they should have leeway in the punishment, but that doesn’t change the fact that rules like that exist for good reasons. And you are only mad because hindsight means you know the outcome was good, which gives you the moral freedom to be outraged.

    Ethically, the driver did the right thing too, but unfortunately there was a consequence to that action. Part of the drivers job is to follow the rules of that job. If hindsight showed the outcome to be horrific, are you sure you wouldn’t all blame the driver for it? We don’t have the ability to predict the future, and rules like that are in place to prevent those bad outcomes. You may feel ethically motivated to violate the rule. I would have done the same thing. And I’d be angry that I lost a job over it, but I wouldn’t blame them for having to enforce the rules. It’s a gray world, and the drivers actions were at once both a right and wrong thing to do.

    • Ursula C

      Hi jason, you are right in many ways. I think the media spun this story so that it appeared the driver was victimized for kindly helping the 3 officers
      however, they did not mention he turned down 2 civilians first so his ethics have to be at questioned there. Also he could have simply called his dispatcher which he failed to do, goodness knows why? Maybe he was too busy taking all those pictures . I think that is why he was fired.

  • Andalusia Alabama

    This man is a hero who got fired for saving American Hero’s over a company policy then that company should have its charter removed and shut them down unless the boss is fired and the driver reinstated.

    • Ursula C

      He was not fired for helping the officers, he was fired because he couldn’t be bothered reporting it to his boss. yes the officers were saved……..saved from getting wet and walking the 1/2 mile to their precinct. This was a good deed for sure and he could have done that without getting fired if he simply contated his dispatcher. he had time but instead he spent that time snapping photos.

  • Cz

    3 “unauthorized passengers” ? They happen to be Police, I can understand if he stopped let some random folks on the bus,but come on,they’re police officers. This company needs to really get their moral compass back on track. Another side note, he had 1 child on the bus, it’s not like he had a bus full to capacity. I think he should take the company to court over this situation,with the backing of 4 police officers he’d probably stand a good chance.

    • Emma Dolci

      they were detectives not in uniform in an unmarked car. They apparently flashed a badge. George Daw did not confirm with the precinct who these people were nor did he contact his dispatcher to inform them he was boarding these officers due to an emergency. He took a huge risk that luckily for the the disabled passenger and matron turned out ok but it could easily have been a disaster.
      Then he didn’t even report it afterwards, it wan’t until the next day when the company asked him what happened to the school bus that was no longer drivable.
      I would have fire him and would not be pressured into reinstating him especially because he said he would do the same thing again.
      Also does anyone wonder why he didn’t help the first 2 people that asked??

  • Alan Lowe

    I have never heard of anything so ridiculous in my life. If he hadn’t stopped and picked them up and they had drowned, then the incident would have prayed on his mind for the rest of his life. He should be commended for what he did. I live in Australia and was a bus driver for 34 years before I retired and I know what would have happened if the same scenario had arisen in Australia.

    • Urscula C

      Unfortunately he chose not to rescue the first 2 people that asked him for help, I am not sure how an Austrailian bus driver would feel about that. He did not report the event to his boss at all on the day, he waited until they asked why his bus wouoldnt drive.
      He did however spend time taking photos which he could sell to the media.
      The company didnt fire him for helping the officers, on the contrary, he was fired becuase he failed to notify his dispatcher, or make a report on the incident.
      Even his union reps agreed with the firing until the media got involved.

  • chuck u farley

    Yet another reason why this country is simply becoming the laughing stock of the entire world. It is reasoning as such that allows us to drive past people stranded along the highway in blizzard conditions. It is reasoning like this that forgoes any humanity toward those who are broke down along side the road or reasoning enough in more extreme cases where people simply drive slow enough to see an accident but dont stop to help even though they are the first people there. To instinctively help a fellow human in the time of need is simply a natural instinct and an admirable trait at that. Heroic if you will, that never seems to get the credit that is much deserved. To allow a corporation to dictate yet again human compassion is simply sinful, and any chode that agrees with the administrative actions toward this driver I do hope to meet sometime stranded along the highway in severe blizzard conditions. To which I simply pass you by with my middle finger raised as I shout out my heated car window “sorry, I would stop and help but company policy, section 725 paragraph C, dictates that I let you freeze your ballsack off”

  • Katherine

    Wow! I can’t believe this poor guy was fired. He saved three cops while keeping the kid in the bus safe. They were COPS not just random people. If anything the management should have felt the child was safer, not endangered, since the officers were there. some policies are so stupid. I hope the driver gets a job out of all of this but I think he’s too good for that manager to be his boss. He has common sense and compassion, the manager has a rule book which he follows constantly. The drivers a good example of how people should be, his boys will grow up to be good men.

    • Mark colter

      If he used your car to take your kid to school and quietly returned it while you were not present. The next day you find the car wrecked. You are shocked by the state of the car and horrified that your kid might have been in danger.
      Would you expect your friend to tell you about it. When you finally track him down he tells you he rescued 3 police officers would you really be just fine with that or better still want to award him something??
      You, like me, might be delighted that officers were able to be aided in a storm but I would be enraged that he did not tell me of the risk to my child and the damage to my car.That is what he was fired for not for helping.

  • ron

    this is what u do. park a tractor trailer in front of school bus company so none of the buses go out when police find out they should not respond man was doing right thing thats what all americans should do

  • Lynda

    Thank you George for your decency and common sense. When I read this article, I was flabbergasted once again at officials who lack basic common sense. Child endangerment – I don’t think so! This child got to see first hand his driver helping out three people in need. What a gret example to set for this child. You should receive a commendation!

  • spammeaccount
  • roose70

    Leaving those officers behind would have been a crime to humanity. Transporting the child without well trained police officers may have been worse. How many scenarios have you thought through? Leaving 3 humans to natures wrath while delivering a student, whom may have to been not able to get home due to the conditions is incorrigible. Please don’t spout first before thinking of the situation.

  • howdydoody

    If that was my kid on the bus, I am not sure I could easily explain the driver leaving 3 people in danger, police officers or not. Another example of what’s wrong with this country. The driver’s supervisor should be tossed under the bus.

  • notrelevant

    If these officers identified themselves before the driver opened the door to help them, how is that different than police commandeering a vehicle in an emergency situation, which this certainly was? As I understand it, police do just that, and it could be argued that that is what effectively happened in this situation. Therefore the driver really had no choice but to assist and should retain his job at a minimum.
    If karma worked this boss would find himself stranded in the middle of the next rising flood.

  • Noah Watson

    The school bus bot boss needs to wake up to reality and humanity.

  • N L Waterman

    Isn’t it against the law to ignore a persons cry for help, or walk away, (drive away in this case) from someone who is in emergency distress? If its not, IT SHOULD BE! But i’m pretty sure there is a law somewhere enforcing people to take action in situations like this. Someone out there, PLEASE offer this man a job where he will be appreciated. He does not deserve this. If he picked up hitchhikers on a sunny day, or his golf buddies he happened to see walkin down the street, then sure, a reprimand would be in order. But this is nothing more than an overzealous supervisor who is taking the rules too literally. What an A**.

    • Lucy

      If that is the law (although I doubt it) then George Daw needs to be charged. He refuled the first 2 people that cried for help.
      What a man!!


    Im a school bus driver. I transport kids with special needs. Here in the midwest, its not uncommon to be on the roads in adverse weather conditions. Our company has a ‘No unauthorized passenger’ policy also. We are not allowed to transport other bus drivers, whether we have kids on the bus or not, unless the ride has been approved first. Now, with that being said, should I happen to come into a situation where another life is in danger and letting them on my bus would save their life, well…I guess I’ll just get prepared to stand in the unemployment line. Its a matter of principle and morals. Its a matter of someone’s life. What if it was me or my daughter trapped in flood waters? I would like to think that someone would have the decency and the heart to help one of us. Whether they were officers or not doesn’t matter. They were humans in danger first. Every job, everywhere has policies and procedures. BUT, in a matter of life or death, come on, be for real. I have to wonder if this driver would have been fired if one of the people he rescued was the owner’s spouse or child.

  • Ken

    This guy’s idiot boss must be an Obama Democrat. They are the only ones I know that are that stupid.

  • mark Colter

    Right the officers were going to die, very likely. Surely you are not so naive that you think there is only one side to this story

  • Luciano

    Did anybody think for a moment about the only kid in the bus? I’m sure he must have had the time of his life and he must have visioned the driver as an hero, taking on board three distressed cops. I’m giving you a symbolic “five”, Mr. Daw!!!

  • Radgast

    The person who fired him should be fired. I hope at the very least these officer give this man a reference ! and show up in court if he needs them to get his job back or at least ask for compensation.

  • Tomm Ayling

    Today folks simply do not think.Rules are rules no matter what.Well if that were the case I would not be here today.My life was saved during the Vietnam war in a non combat area .But another sailor went against Naval policy and saved me from being shot to death.He broke the rules and could have got in a lot of trouble …..But in the 70’s folks look at what was once called (common sense).Obviously this heroic mans boss is under 40 and thinks with his ASS,not the head on his shoulders.

  • Deb Shaw

    That is pathetic. Justice would be served if the guy who fired him was required to pay his bills until he finds employment again. We’re all in this together, People!

  • Kelly

    Just imagine the following headline: “Three Detectives die in flash flood as bus driver does nothing; child traumatized”

  • Dwayne

    GIVE HIM THE JOB BACK! —— The Company is being run by “morons!” The Police Department and the Mayor of the town should put pressure on the company to give the driver his job back!

  • Gregory Holman

    In certain states, it is a crime to walk away from a life threatening situation if you could help. That is also why they have Good Samaritan Laws.
    We haven’t learned much since the murder of Kitty Genovese in 1964.

  • JP

    Well, if the three people he picked up posed any danger to the child, I suppose he could have dialled 911 and get the pol… oh, right.

  • Jeff Rosen ret NYPD Sgt

    This is undoubtedly one of the most unbelievable things I read today. Even if the three men were civilians it would have been commendable fot Mr Daw to rescue them. Thanks for printing this as I’m sure the negative publicity will cause the bus company to reconsider and I bet Mr Daw will get some other job offers. Hopefully Nassau writes their buses for every little infraction possible.

    • Jeff Benson

      Does NYS have a “good samaritan law” ? If so, I predict this school bus trans. mgr. will hide behind .. “I misunderstood.”

    • lucy

      Sgt Rosen, I agree it is unbelievable, completely. The detectives were lucky not to be ciilians. The 2 civilians that cried for help prior, Mr Daw ignored according to the Matron on board.
      Also he was fired because he didn’t let the company know what was going on not because he helped the detectives.
      You are probably more familiar than most about always notifying before acting. This is practiced for safety reasons by police, firefighters and EMT’s.
      I really hope my Daw gets a job offer somewhere other than a school bus but for the moment he has been reinstated.
      Perhaps you are able to access the termination report that has been flashed around by mr Daw. There you will see he did not inform the company until the next day and only when it was discovered that the suburban no longer ran. What would happen if police officers did that?
      I think it is really sad that Mr Daw exploited the detectives to get away with not reporting the incident.

  • David

    AMEN Brutha! I totally agree with this statement and think the same thing. Man, that would be funny to watch, as soon as he pulls out of his driveway… EVERYDAY! LMAO!


    What’s Educational Bus’s Owners Name, Telephone Number and Address? These need WIDEST possible dissemination [Facebook, Twitter etc] so people everywhere can start calling to voice their displeasure.

    • Jeff Rosen ret NYPD Sgt

      Great idea!!!

      • Mista

        Already called em ,but keep calling , ya knowasking for a job , what some policies are etc, 631 842 7373, the lady initially denied they were the company, and then hung up on me, I still had more questions , and was interested in a job…

  • Just Wondering

    Another case of some idiot being in charge, make ne wonder just how safe those children are with boss’s like that

  • Brian Wood

    There is another side to this. If the bus driver did not stop to help the three detectives and if one more more of the detectives died because of the drivers lack of help, then he would have been in trouble for that. He did the right thing and it is only a matter of time before some in local or state government steps in and helps make this situation right. I would be shocked if he doesn’t get a award for helping the detectives and/or gets his job back.

    • Brian Wood

      I meant to say someone instead of some, and if he doesn’t get his job back.


    Daw should be IMMEDIATELY REINSTATED AND PROMOTED and his boss should be FIRED. The Public needs to step in and DEMAND Educational Bus rectify this. If they don’t they should be BANNED from EVERY SCHOOL’s PROPERTY IN THE STATE OF NEW YORK (put these f*cks OUT OF BUSINESS ;)

  • Fred Sayin

    What if the 3 people he picked up were relatives of his boss? Would he still have gotten fired? How would his boss react if the Long Island Bus Driver told him: ” I had to tell your relatives I couldn’t help them during a severe storm as I didn’t want to break company policy. All of you will have to defend for yourselves against death” His company firing him has three issues:
    1. Violation of the Good Samiritan Act for the bus driver
    2. If driver refused to help police, the police he refused to help could file civil lawsuits against the driver and the company he works for.if injuries/death occurred
    3. As an Eagle Scout (1984) it is my opinion that the driver’s Bill of Rights- first 10 amendments was violated. Which one? Amendment 5- ” No one can be tried twice for the same crime. One cannot be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law…”

  • jim

    ove it. This is why these guys in London riot. 90% of what we see makes no sense. I hope the fired guy wins the lottery and the guy who fired him should die of cancer soon.

  • Alkebu

    I want to know what the Company’s side of the story is if they in fact have one. On the face of it I do believe the management over reacted. But are the factors that colored their decision.



  • Rhonda

    George Daw you have an amazing heart and I would hope that you never give up the selfless act of helping others in need in the middle of the turmoil you are surrounded in.
    Kudos to you!!!

  • theswaf

    you have to understand that the students/childrens safty is above all as it should be, regardless if its one kid or 100 kids, this person should have been fired, as this rule is there for a reason, its not up to debate wether or not to enforce this rule, regardless of the silly debate that follows.

    • perry mc intosh

      i do understand that childrens safty is above all else ,but people like you would put them in steal boxes and feed them througe a small opening,to keep them safe. you sont think anybody should ever use commoncende in cituations like these, our politions and elected officials take everything to extreems when deeling with kids in what they preceive as danger sex between teens that are weeks apart in age thats concential aresting the older one and not the younger ,aresting parents for spanking their kid not beating them etc. most of these rules or policys are nonthing but trying to get publisty or apear to be big deels by 0 tolerence even in cases like this

    • ballera33

      If the child on the bus needed medical assistance, would the driver be “authorized” to allow police officers, EMTs, whomever on board the bus? Or would he fired for that, too? This is a case where strict acknowledgement of wording is unnecessary and counter productive. If anything, that kid probably saw that driver as a hero.



  • Nancy

    No, it is not fair, what is going on; has the whole world gone crazy!

  • Elfia

    I think it was terrible of them to fire there employee! He was doing a selflish act and in no way was that child in any danger. Saving those policeman was so amazing and I only hope that if I ever needed help George Daw would be there to save me. He is a true inspiration to all of us and we should all be so lucky to have an employee like him..devoted to his job. I am a parent of 3 and I would not be upset if that was my child left in the van, I would be happy to have my child withness a hero!

  • Jeffrey Shallcross

    I fail to understand where the child endangerment stems from? The bus driver picked up police officers. Talk about cold hearted, fire a guy for saving lives over a company policy, i bet if the drivers boss was about to drown out there , they would have been happy to ignore their own policy.

    • Mike

      I would just like to reply to the reply you received from theswaf. The article does not say that he drove through flooded areas. Where did you get that?

    • Stephanie Mauser

      @ theswaf–he didn’t “drive through flooded areas”. he was already on the road when the deluge hit. he was stopped like all the other traffic there. he was snapping photos while stopped. what part of that constitutes DRIVING through flooded areas? he’s in an SUV, higher profile vehicle than the standard cop car, less likely to end up with the engine swamped, thus rendering the vehicle inoperative. he hears calls for help, lets THREE COPS on the bus. what part of that is endangering the welfare of the child? the company he works for didn’t tell him to NOT get on the road to get the kid because the weather was going to flood the areas he drove in, they didn’t call him once he was on the road to tell him to not get the child or to stay where he picked the child up until the weather cleared. it seems the bus company didn’t anticipate the weather would cause flooding, but apparently they expect their employees to. the biggest danger to the child was the weather, if the company did not cancel/delay the pick-up due to the weather, how is it the drivers fault? once the man was on the road with the child in the bus and encountered the flash flood, the only thing he could have done would be to stop driving until the weather passed, which he did. had he not picked up the cops, this would be a non-issue. police corruption? what, the cops were going to hold the kid ransom or something? “it could have gone a very bad way”, “it could have gone a different way”. yeah, and a meteor COULD fall on your head any time you step out the door, that would be VERY bad and different, maybe you should just stay in…

    • theswaf

      the driver drove though flooded areas, you may not think that is dangerous but it is and could have gone a very bad way.

  • Richard Kasten

    After having picked up the detectives he should have continued on to the child’s destination. By then the short lived hailstorm would have subsided.

    Yes, the punishment was too severe.

  • Stan

    Someone ought to just walk in the manager’s office and slap the SOB out of his chair. Just like in the movies.

    Someone really frightening should whisper things in his ear. Do you think he might call the police?

  • Mark Killam

    So, basically, what you’re saying is the lesson for this child should have been; “if you think that helping people that you don’t know live, it’s better to let them die”. What kind of view on life is that? Is it better not to rescue people from underneath the rubble of an earthquake because they are strangers? Or any other scenario that you can come up with, for that matter… Remember, Billy, if you don’t know them, let them die. After all, it’s better to not expose yourself to risk of any kind, and do not allow strangers to believe in hope. (lordbrokenhalo@hotmail.com)

  • Stan

    The Mayor, Police Chief and School Board should move heaven and earth to get this guy’s manager terminated and this driver back to work.

    If his manager only supervisors the drivers and their buses – promote the driver and give him the manager’s job. He has demonstarted he has common sense and understands policy can have exemptions.

  • Lieutenantdan

    Badges should have nothing to do with the fact that this brave man felt compelled to save another human being. This is where the news media should come down hard on the owners of the bus company and elected officials should step up and comment on this situation and the President should comment as well.
    If a person stands by and does nothing to help and the person who needs help dies than would the person who did not help be in some kind of trouble?
    Does a Good Samaritan law exist?

  • Barbara B

    Maybe someone should tell his employer that Human life is more important that Policy. He helped three police officers, not criminals on the bus. He also told the student to get in the back of the bus for safety sake.

    His employer needs to come out of his/her white tower and see the real World..

  • TOM


  • George Swartz


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