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Parent’s worst nightmare in Texas: 18-wheeler hits school bus

A Texas parent’s worst nightmare occurred Nov. 5 in Kirbyville, Texas. An 18-wheeler freightliner truck ran into the back of a school bus full of children.

The bus was allegedly stopped on US 96 to pick up a student. The normal stoplights were activated, and the student had just climbed onto the bus and taken his seat. The lights were still activated when the bus was struck from the rear. It was not a direct head-on hit, as the truck driver swerved to the left and collided with the left panel of the back of the bus. This may have been a saving grace to the students at the back of the bus.

Fifty-two students were passengers on the bus, and six were transported to hospitals in the local area. Other children were checked for injuries by various parents. Fortunately, in this collision, none of the students suffered serious or fatal injuries, as can be so common in large truck accidents.

An arrest warrant was issued for the driver of the 18-wheeler, a 72-year-old man. He turned himself into the Jasper County Jail on the Saturday following the Nov. 5 accident, but he was subsequently released after posting bond in the amount of $7,500. The charge is felony injury to a child.

Accidents that involve trucks or buses of any kind seldom result in good endings. The size of the vehicles and number of potential passengers often end with catastrophic injuries or fatalities. There are strict laws for truck drivers and safety training for bus drivers to minimize these types of commercial vehicle accidents.

While the driver at fault can be held responsible for any injuries or damages in an accident such as this, if the vehicle is a company-owned truck, the company or owner may also be held responsible.

Source: 12News, "UPDATE: Charges filed in Kirbyville ISD bus crash" Nov. 05, 2014

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