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Crowded buses at school start: Parent taxis endanger first-time pupils in Bad Godesberg and Wachtberg

Crowded buses at school start : Parent taxis endanger first-time pupils in Bad Godesberg and Wachtberg

These days it is difficult and tight not only for the first time pupils in front of their new school. Also the "old hands" have to struggle with full buses on their way to school.

Exciting first days lie behind the first year primary school kids. Sometimes, however, it is not only exciting for the children within the primary school walls. Parents' taxis or cars that drive too fast cause dangerous situations at the primary schools in Bad Godesberg and Wachtberg.

When it comes to parent-taxis, the Beethoven School has long been relying on a white boundary line in front of the schoolyard. No parent is allowed to step behind this line during delivery times. "The boundary for the parents' taxi has proven its worth for years," said headmistress Amelie Grewe-Ludden when asked by the GA. "After a few days, the children know that they can make their own way from this line."

Due to the pandemic, this year most of the little ones are going into the building alone from the school entrance gate. The children, who already manage the journey largely on their own, are accompanied by parent guides all year round. According to Grewe-Ludden, a pick-up and drop-off zone will soon be opened in Denglerstraße, which is close to the school, behind the Herz-Jesu-Kirche in order to further equalise the arrival situation. "Parents can drop off their children there so that they can walk the rest of the way on their own," says the school principal.

At the beginning of the week the traffic situation in front of the school was very cramped. But at least many cars drove slowly past the school. Even though space was scarce here and there, pedestrians, cyclists and car drivers generally agreed to be considerate.

A user of social media reports chaos and danger in front of the Drachenfelsschule in Niederbachem. Especially the smallest children are endangered by the masses of parental taxis. Vehicles on the sidewalk blocked the footpath to school for children, so that they almost have to walk on the street. In addition, the intersection in front of the school was completely blocked, the woman commented.

According to the Wachtberg community, the problem, which also exists in other places, is known at this point. One appeals again and again to the parents to remember that many children arrive on foot. In addition, the parents could use the parking lot of the Protestant parish, which is provided free of charge.

For the people of Niederbach, however, a relaxation of the traffic situation seems in sight. "As part of the integrated action concept, plans are currently being drawn up to rebuild Mehlemer Strasse in this area," says Marlies Frech from the parish. The project will be presented at one of the next meetings of the Committee for Infrastructure and Construction.

For Birgit Michels, there is a simple reason why more and more parent-taxis are being offered at primary and especially secondary schools. "The situation in the buses is catastrophic when you consider that we live in Corona times," said the mother from Berkum, whose children attend schools in Bad Godesberg. Lines 856 and 857 are more than busy during rush hours. "Here, children from different classes and schools sit and stand together in a very confined space, and yet in the schools they are meticulously made sure that there is no mixing," said the Wachtbergerin.

"I have always refused to drive my children, especially since several of them have different pick-up and drop-off times. But in the meantime I no longer send them by bus," says the mother of two. Reiner Ahrens from Godesberg also wants to do without the bus and his pensioner ticket in future. He criticized that people on public transport are being crammed together like cattle. "There was probably more distance at the Heinsberg carnival than in such a crowded bus at rush hour," he concluded. Which is why he would like to see transport companies in general send extra school buses onto the streets or double the frequency during rush hours.

When asked, the Regionalverkehr Köln GmbH (RVK) announced that all available capacity had been made available since the start of school. However, the planned provision of up to 1000 additional buses by the state of NRW still requires clarification. "The personnel reserves required for this must be available and also whether any additional existing vehicles are suitable for school transport must be examined", said spokeswoman Andrea Jahn. This could not yet be answered ad hoc. However, there are no distance regulations for local public transport, but there is an obligation for everyone over the age of six to wear a mouth and nose protector. Stadtwerke Bonn could not be reached on Monday for a(n assessment) comment.