Girl Scout trip marred by bus problems

It's a trip that some will remember for all the wrong reasons-- but despite bus problems Girl Scouts from our area are on the road home by now. For a while it looked as though the 70 Girl Scouts and the rest of their group might be stranded in Washington D.C. as they awaited  repairs to two buses.   But we're told it's all straightened out now and the buses hit the road about 5 p.m.

Earlier, on the way to Washington D.C., it was one uncomfortable journey to those riding on one or two of the three buses. .

The 170 people were on their way to Washington for the 100th birthday celebration of Girl Scouts. The group was girls and parents from the Louisiana Pines to the Gulf Council which is comprised of 42 parishes including those in the Lake Charles Lafayette area.

One mother, who asked not to be identified, says it was pretty miserable. "On the way to D.C. the air conditioning on the bus went out and it was more than one bus. Number one bus and number two bus. We have people on there in wheel chairs, we have people expecting, we have younger kids and we have people that just -- a hundred and something degrees on a bus is too hot. I cannot take the heat so it's not a good trip for me," she said.

New Dimension travel says they owned only one of the three buses and that the two other buses are owned by other companies. At one point two buses were fixed and they were waiting on the third.

Some of the activities had to be canceled because of the bus fiasco. Mom, Toni Alexander says for a while they felt stranded because of a dispute between the bus companies over who should pay for repairs..."I think that's why everyone was in such despair yesterday because we really felt like we were stranded there. I mean there were buses and we had no way of fixing them because the owner of the company was not taking care of his responsibilities."

STill Alexander says they've made the best of it. "It's been a wonderful, wonderful trip and I hope the goodness of this trip doesn't get overshadowed with this negativity that we're having with the bus company because it's really been an amazing opportunity for these girls. We toured the White House. We've toured the Capitol, We've been through many of the Smithsonian museums," said Alexander.

The spokesman for Girl Scouts Pines to the Gulf Council is Erin Turner. She said they had meetings all day and could not furnish us with anyone to do an interview. But she told us by phone that responsible adults were handling the situation and that nearly each girl has a parent with her.

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