What factors are used to determine bus cancellations and who makes the decision?
Weather and road conditions are assessed by bus operators and NPSSTS staff between 5:00 a.m. and 5:30 a.m. with a decision made by 5:45 a.m. Ultimately, the responsibility for the decision lies with the General Manager of the NPSSTS (or designate). Several factors are taken into account, including road maintenance schedules, road closures, road conditions, visibility, temperature, and impending weather conditions.
As stated in our Delays or Cancellations Due to Inclement Weather guideline, student transportation may be cancelled due to any of the following conditions:
- Visibility is reduced to less than 100 m.
- Road conditions are unsafe for travel.
- The temperature is less than -35° Celsius or -40 with the wind chill factor.
- Severe weather is expected in the area within the next 10 hours.
The decision whether or not to cancel transportation is never taken lightly. In assessing the situation, we strive to ensure that neither academic studies nor student safety is compromised. In this vein, we will neither send the buses on the road if it is clearly hazardous to do so nor cancel buses when it is not clearly necessary to do so. Obviously, some inclement weather days are clearer than others and conditions sometimes change after the decision is made.
How do I find out if my school bus is cancelled in the morning?
Easiest option is to follow the procedure here: PARENT PORTAL WEB INSTRUCTIONS and create a Bus Planner Web Parent Account.
However, you can also check online or listen to the radio for cancellation announcements, but you need to know your weather zone first. The search feature on our Delays and Cancellations page allows you to determine or confirm your zone, using your route number. If you don't know your route number, please check through the Student Login. Corridor cancellations will be posted to our Delays and Cancellations page shortly after the decision is made (by about 6:30 a.m., barring any unforeseen circumstances). Notice is also provided to the following local media outlets for the purpose of public broadcast:
600 AM CKAT
1090 AM Radio-Canada (Mattawa)
1240 AM CBC Radio One (Mattawa)
1340 AM CBC Radio One (Temagami)
95.1 FM (Radio-Canada)
95.7 FM (Rock 95)
96.1 FM CBC Radio One
99.3 FM The Moose (West Nipissing)
100.5 FM (EZ Rock)
101.9 FM (The Fox)
103.3 FM (The Moose: Parry Sound)
103.5 FM KFM (Christian radio: North Bay)
104.1 FM (The Dock)
105.5 FM CFBK
106.3 FM (The Moose: North Bay)
107.5 FM (Kool FM)
CBC Radio One Sudbury affiliated stations (96.1 FM and 107.7 FM)
CBC Radio One Toronto affiliated stations (89.9 FM and 94.3 FM)
For a list of stations by region and other handy Inclement Weather information, please see the pamphlets available on our Delays and Cancellations page.
Sometimes individual routes are cancelled, independent of any full corridor cancellations. In these situations, operators attempt to advise affected families by phone. The information will also be posted on our Delays and Cancellations page as soon as it is received by NPSSTS staff.
When transportation is cancelled in the morning, it will not be provided in the afternoon. All cancellations, whether by corridor or by individual route, are effective for the entire day.
Will cancelled buses run in the afternoon?
No, when transportation is cancelled in the morning, it will not be provided in the afternoon. All bus cancellations, whether by corridor or by individual route, are effective for the entire day.
What are weather zones?
The current weather corridors for our three distinct service regions are:
- North Bay
- West Nipissing
- East Ferris, Callander and Bonfield
- Highway 63
- Highway 11 North
- Trout Lake / Four Mile Lake Rd
- Ahmic Harbour, McDougall, and Whitestone
- Britt and Nobel
- MacTier, Rosseau, and Humphrey
- Town of Parry Sound
- East Parry Sound - North
- East Parry Sound - South
What if weather worsens during the school day?
Impending weather conditions are a factor in the morning cancellation decisions: storms expected to coincide with afternoon bus runs may result in a full-day cancellation of service. However, if the forecast seems to allow for both morning and afternoon runs, service will proceed as usual and conditions will continue to be monitored. There are contingency plans in place, should weather conditions worsen during the school day to the point where afternoon transportation would be affected. Parents/guardians will be contacted if transportation is being altered as part of these plans.
How do I know if my school bus is delayed?
You can check online. However, you need to know your bus route number first, and you may also need to know your weather zone.
All delays of 15 minutes or more are posted online as soon as the information is received by NPSSTS staff. Operators also attempt to advise affected families by phone when there is a significant delay.
NPSSTS staff only advise the media of delays when a significant number of routes are affected, such as with a highway closure or a full corridor delay. Corridors are rarely delayed, given that the conditions leading to potential delays (i.e. visibility or road conditions) are more likely to warrant a cancellation.
My bus was delayed, but it wasn’t listed online?
All delays of 15 minutes or more are posted online as soon as the information is received by NPSSTS staff. However, our receipt of the information is dependent on drivers notifying their dispatch and the operators subsequently notifying our office.
If the delay you experienced was greater than 15 minutes and was not posted online, please contact the NPSSTS (preferably by e-mail) with details (i.e. your route number, time of delay, etc.) so that we may conduct an investigation.