A DATTCO school bus driver for the East Hampton school district in Connecticut was honored for his heroic rescue of one of his students who was almost struck by a speeding vehicle as she exited her school bus.
Randy Kronick is credited for saving the life of 9-year-old Naomi Mastroianni, who was nearly hit when an oncoming SUV failed to stop for the bus stop sign and flashing lights. Kronick pulled the child out of the way just the vehicle sped by.
Kronick said he does not consider himself a hero—he was just doing his job; adding that the DATTCO safety procedures should receive all the praise for preventing a potential tragedy.
DATTCO drivers are trained to ensure close communication with their students to assist in crossing streets. Students and drivers typically maintain eye contact, the students waiting for cues from the driver for when it’s safe to cross.
“At DATTCO, the safety of the children we transport is our No. 1 priority,” said Don DeVivo, president of DATTCO. “We are so grateful for Randy and his heroic actions. We pride ourselves on employing the best transportation professionals in the country, and Randy certainly is a stellar example of this.”
Recently, DATTCO launched the campaign, Safety Starts with Me, that has employees pledge to make safety their priority when on the job.
Eric Thompson, branch manager at East Hampton, and Phil Johnson, vice president of the school bus division at DATTCO, both agreed that Kronick’s actions are a prime example of how prioritizing safety and procedural consistency can make the difference in a life or death situation.
Kronick has slightly altered his route since the incident so that Mastroianni is dropped off directly in front of her home without having to cross the street.
DATTCO is a third-generation family-owned business that was established in 1924. Headquartered in New Britain, Connecticut, the company services more than 40 school districts throughout the Constitution State and is the top bus dealer in New England.