Bus driver accused of driving kids to school while drunk

Posted at 8:52 PM, Aug 27, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-27 20:52:57-04

Farmington, CT (WFSB) — A bus driver in Farmington was arrested for being three times the legal limit while driving students to school.

Police said Tammy Costello, 44, faces 20 counts of risk of injury to a minor. She is employed by M&J Bus Inc.

An officer en route to the Irving Robbins Middle School happened to be behind Costello’s bus on Wednesday. He said he saw the bus’ tires swerve partially off the pavement and onto a grassy area.

The officer followed the bus to the school without noticing any other violations.

However, students told the officer that Costello had hit several curbs over the course of their trip.

The officer spoke to the driver and immediately suspected that she was intoxicated. She then failed field sobriety tests.

Costello was brought to the Farmington Police Department where her breath tests were .139 and .134. The legal limit for commercial drivers in Connecticut is .04.

Police said there were 20 students on board, but none of them were hurt.

School officials are notifying their parents. Monday was the first day of classes for all Farmington Public Schools students.

The Department of Motor Vehicles said it would be conducting an audit to ensure M&J is complying with state statutes.

Costello was released on a $25,000 and scheduled to face a judge on Sept. 2.

Eyewitness News went to the home of Costello, but no one answered the door.