Note to bus drivers: if you ever find yourself in traffic and get off your bus to check with police about why the traffic is being held up, do not do the following: (1) get off your bus without following proper procedures (even if the passengers are “antsy”); (2) yell at the cop; (3) lie to your boss later about what happened if the cop calls SEPTA to complain about you. Because, if you do, you will likely be fired and will not be eligible for Unemployment Compensation.
Veronda Roundtree, unfortunately, found that out the hard way. Excerpts from her unsuccessful UC appeal below.
On November 12, 2010, [Roundtree] was driving her bus when it was stopped in Collingdale due to traffic. She exited the bus to determine the problem and allegedly got into a verbal altercation with a police officer regarding the traffic problem….
Before a Referee, [Roundtree’s boss] testified that he received a phone call from the Chief of Police of Collingdale regarding an incident that [Roundtree] had with a police officer who was helping with an evacuation drill at a school with about 800 kids. He stated that traffic was stopped on MacDade Boulevard for about 10 minutes and, according to the Chief of Police, [Roundtree] got off her bus and confronted one of the police officers. She was arguing that he should let traffic through. The police officer became irate and called Employer’s Control Center.
[Roundtree], appearing pro se, testified that when she came upon the stopped traffic, her passengers were antsy and she had always been told to keep the passengers informed. So she thought she was doing her job by getting off of the bus and asking the police office what was going on. She stated that she had to get off the bus to let Control know why traffic wasn’t moving and to let the passengers know what was going on. When she asked the police offer why traffic wasn’t moving, he didn’t say anything and just looked at her.
The Commonwealth Court decision doesn’t say what bus she was driving, but does say she was on MacDade Boulevard in Collingdale. Must be the 113.