West Chester >> A Downingtown woman who drives a Krapf school bus for the West Chester Area School District hit the trifecta when she once again finished first in the 42nd annual State School Bus Driver Safety Competition held recently. She took first place the past two years.
Shanon O’Brien won the conventional bus competition and is a three-peat champion having also finished first in the state competition in 2016 and 2017.
A total of 78 competed in this year’s competition at the Mount Nittany Middle School (66 conventional and 12 transit drivers). Drivers and competition judges arrived on Friday evening for an orientation and the driver’s written examination. The drivers got behind the wheel to compete in the skills portion of the competition. Events included a physical and verbal bus inspection; height judgement; diminishing clearance; simulated bus stop; railroad crossings; backing up; and curb line parking.
Larry Hannon Sr., a driver for the Centennial School District, Warminster, Bucks County, took second. This year marked Hannon’s 40th state competition. He has finished first 111 times at the state level and is a nine-time champion of the international competition. Larry resides in Hartsville, Bucks County.
In the Transit Bus category, Mike Webster took first. He drives for Brightbill Transportation located in Lebanon, Lebanon County. Webster has had great success in state competitions, finishing in the top spot in 2015 and in second place in 2016. Mike is a resident of Lebanon.
Beth McGowan took second. She is a driver for the Lower Merion School District, in Montgomery County. She is a resident of Ardmore, Delaware County. Over the past three years, Beth has been moving up in the state competition. In 2016, she finished sixth in the state competition and then fourth in the 2017 event.
“We are proud of all of these drivers who trained hard for the competition. We look forward to the International Competition in Philadelphia and wish our state representatives good luck,” said Dallas Krapf, Chair of the Safety Competition Committee, “I want to also thank all our volunteers and event sponsors who help make this event such a success.”
The complete results of this year’s competition can be found on the PSBA website at www.paschoolbus.org.