11 Students Hurt, 3 in Critical Condition After 'Fast-Moving' School Bus Crashes

The parents of 11 middle school children in Anaheim, California are probably holding their kids a lot tighter this morning after learning that the school bus taking them home from an after-school activity crashed, leaving 11 students and the bus driver hurt -- 3 in critical condition. The incident sounds like an absolute nightmare -- the bus jumped a curb, collided into trees and a lamp post, and landed tilted on its side. The young passengers and bus driver were then told the vehicle was leaking gasoline. They rushed to evacuate the bus before something even more catastrophic could happen.

Investigators are still looking into what caused the vehicle to spiral out of control, but one witness claims the school bus was traveling so fast, it appeared to leap into the air.

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In total, 11 seventh- and eighth-grade students were hurt -- 2 of whom are in critical condition -- and the bus driver, who had to be cut from the bus and pulled to safety through its windshield, is also in critical condition. Some students were reportedly unconscious when help arrived, while others had been knocked around and had blood on them. One girl reportedly suffered from a missing toe and a gash on her head.

The bus was equipped with seat belts, but no one is sure exactly how many students were strapped into their seats. That makes me wonder if safety belt rules were taken seriously and whether some of these horrific injuries could have been prevented.

Cops report that skid marks were not visible on the road, which leads them to believe the driver didn't brake while the bus was crashing. Or maybe he tried to stop the vehicle and his brakes failed him? A witness says the driver and students were screaming for help from the bus windows, which makes me guess the driver somehow lost control of the bus or it wasn't functioning -- even though it reportedly passed inspection just a few months ago.

The bottom line is: we don't have all of the answers at this point. But we can be thankful that most of the students' injuries weren't severe and that no one lost their lives in this horrible accident.

What do you think caused this school bus to spin out of control? Do you feel comfortable letting your children travel on a school bus?

 

Image via Bill McChesney/Flickr

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