We all know that texting and driving has become the new bane of the common roadways, but WLS radio's ever-alert Jake Hartford has unearthed a new threat to public safety: PACE bus drivers who read while driving.
This was disclosed two Saturdays ago when Hartford's physician sidekick, Dr. Bob, called in his weekly medical advice segment to Hartford's 5 to 8 am Saturday morning "Awake with Jake" show and reported that he witnessed an African-American female PACE bus driver reading a book while driving.
An obviously distraught Dr. Bob, told Hartford that on Friday, May 13th he was driving in Hoffman Estates during a commute between two hospitals. There he saw the bus driver piloting the bus in traffic with 20 passengers aboard with a book open atop the steering wheel, head down, reading.
|WLS's Jake Hartford|
What really seemed to bother Dr. Bob was that when he reported it to PACE customer service, the African-American woman who took the call didn't seem to give a damn.
"When she asked me to describe the lady driver, I think she thought I was racist," Dr. Bob said.
The PACE customer service representative told him that without the precise bus number and route number she wouldn't take a complaint.
Dr. Bob gave her the precise time, location and direction of travel of the bus and the last 2 code numbers off the bus, but that wasn't enough to even pique the PACE lady's interest.
The safety of several dozen PACE riders seemed of little concern -- she needed those numbers.
She told him: No exact bus ID number and route number, no report.
When the doctor complained that she was being unreasonable and threatened to make mention of it on a major radio outlet, she told him, "You go right ahead and make yourself happy."
Last Saturday, Hartford reported that he, himself had gotten something of a runaround from PACE and urged his listeners to e-mail the PACE Board of Directors at BOD@pacebus.com
Tune in tomorrow morning to 890-AM between 5am and 8am for the next episode of the bookish bus driver and the PACE, old-girls-from-the-hood, mutual protection racket.
SATURDAY NEWS UPDATE: On Saturday morning, Jake Hartford reported on his show that as a result of his appeal, PACE had received emails from listeners numbering in the "double digits." This prompted them to finally respond to Hartford's email inquiry. PACE told him that they had disciplined and reassigned the idiotically uncooperative customer service representative.
PACE told him that the bookish bus driver was a substitute and was reading her route when spied by Dr. Bob. Hartford said that "that is something Dr. Bob would likely dispute since he distinctly reported having seen her reading a "paperback book."
Hartford said that PACE officials declined his invitation to discuss the incident on today's WLS broadcast.