Salem-Keizer schools prepare for winter travel over the Santiam Pass for games in Bend | StatesmanJournal.com

You think you have travel concerns? Check out what these Oregon schools must consider when making a particularly tricky drive.

On Tuesday, two Salem high school basketball teams will start their league season by traveling over the Santiam Pass for games in Bend.

As part of a new safety protocol put in place should a bus get stuck on the pass, the bus will include a special piece of emergency equipment: a 55-gallon bucket. Inside the bucket will be blankets, toilet paper, water and other items intended to help students and coaches make do until help arrives.

Salem-Keizer administrators, coaches, parents and student-athletes are dealing with the increased travel because the OSAA decided to combine five local schools — South Salem, McNary, Sprague, McKay and West Salem — with Bend-area schools Mountain View, Summit and Bend in the new Mountain Valley Conference.

During the fall high school sports season, one bus carrying Salem-Keizer cross country athletes broke down during a road trip to Bend.

The incident happened in August, so it was more inconvenient than anything else.

But it served as a learning experience for the district and shed light on addressing worse-case scenarios.

Read the entire article at StatesmanJournal.com.

Photo by Denisse Leon on Unsplash

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