Buster Smith lives near the Jack Mattox recreational complex. He was shocked to learn that two buses were burned in this lot over the weekend.
"That's just a shame that someone, I would say that someone has set those buses, you know, set them afire," said Buster Smith.
"The fire department immediately responded and then they gave us a call around 4am and we had somebody, Bill Gardener, our transportation manager get to the scene a little after four o clock," said Doug Suits, Director of Operations for Hamilton County Schools.
Fire officials quickly determined that they are dealing with a clear case of arson.
"According to the fire investigator this morning, It seemed like someone did set the fire intentionally and so at that point he handed me some posters that we are going to start posting and ask for you guys to start helping if you would."
It was not unusual to see the buses parked in this lot at the complex.
"They were parked there because we have parked them there for years in those lots and it's a good starting point for the routes and that's where they leave them in the afternoons."
"I mean they live close by, and this is a good place to park them.....it looked like it would be a safe spot."
School officials are hoping to recoup their losses soon...
"A bus costs us about 84 to 94 thousand dollars and I'm hoping the insurance will help us out with this of course to offset the cost but our good community has also given us the opportunity through ESPLOST to be able to take care of some of our transportation needs so we'll hopefully be ok," Suits says.
If you have any information on this case. You are asked to call Georgia Arson Control at 1-800-282-5804. They are offering a reward of up to ten thousand dollars.