Buses to run on schedule; CARTA joins 'strike mode'

      CHARLESTON, S.C. - For now, Charleston County School District officials say buses will run as scheduled on Wednesday. But that did not stop county, law enforcement and CARTA officials from putting together a tentative plan for a possible bus strike.

      "Ultimately, when two groups of adults argue and children are the ones who are left the victims," said Elliott Summey, chairman for CARTA. "That's when we're going to step up to the plate and make sure that these children aren't victims."

      Summey says the transportation agency will offer free rides to students.

      "If it's a strike in the middle of the day and the school district calls and says we've got kids that are stranded at school, we would step in and help move some equipment in order to get those children back to their parents at some centralized location," he said.

      Summey says students would only need their IDs to take advantage of the offer.

      "We've been talking to Dr. (Nancy) McGinley and Chairman (Cindy) Coats with the school district and we anticipate that later on down the road we'd figure out some sort of reimbursement scenario," Summey said.

      Summey said the agency has been in contact with local law enforcement agencies about providing ways to make sure every child makes it home from the CARTA bus stops safely.

      "Hopefully we don't have a bus strike, but ultimately if that happens I try to look for a silver lining," said Summey. "Maybe it's an education process for kids to learn how to use our public transit system."

      Summey says 80 percent of the schools are on CARTA fixed routes. To view a map of routes, click here.