Bus driver charged with OUI allegedly drank on the job before
DUDLEY, Mass. - A Dudley school bus driver accused of an OUI had allegedly been drunk on the job before.
"He was hitting curbs, stumbling through the bus yard, slurred speech. There were a lot of things," a source told FOX25 Investigates.
Last week, police said Scott Poirier crashed a school bus with children onboard into a utility pole in Dudley; when officers arrived, they said Poirier was visibly intoxicated. His BAC was at .157, nearly twice the legal limit for a regular driver and four times the legal limit for a bus driver, according to court documents.
FOX25 Investigates has uncovered new concerns that it wasn't the first time the driver was drunk while behind the wheel; police said they have received multiple reports and concerns about prior incidents since the crash.
"We are looking into the drivers' activities before, during and after the incident as it relates to the offense. We are certainly open to anyone who may have information to add and we will be in contact with the involved agencies if the situation warrants," said Dudley Police Chief Steven Wojnar.
One employee of the bus company First Student, which contracts with Dudley School District, told FOX25's Robert Goulston that people spoke up previously about the driver being drunk, worried he was dangerous. However, the employee said it believes First Student didn't do anything about the concerns.
"They have children on these busses they need to keep them safe. That's their number one goal and I don't think they have been doing this," said the First Student employee.
First Student refutes the allegations and said in a statement, "We have not received any drinking and driving reports about the driver. We have a zero tolerance for that behavior. We have initiated the termination process for him. Because this is an ongoing investigation, we cannot comment further on the case."
FOX25 tried to contact Poirier, but when Robert Goulston called his home, a man hung up after answering.
The First Student employee said it decided to share their concerns in hopes of changing procedure.
"They need to make better rules so that when someone reports something they need to report it to the police station, not just take it into their own hands," said the employee.
FOX25 Investigates also reached out to the school district and Superintendent Gregg Desto responded, "I wanted to let you know that at no time have I or anyone in our district ever been notified of any concern about Mr. Poirier (or for that matter any bus driver) drinking while on the job."
Desto said the district is still reviewing "every aspect" of the incident.