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April 07, 2014  |   Comments (12)   |   Post a comment

Unattended school bus rolls, strikes student


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Investigators say they believe a school bus driver left his bus unattended with four students on board, and the vehicle then crossed the road and struck a small child.Photo by Prince George's County Police Department

Investigators say they believe a school bus driver left his bus unattended with four students on board, and the vehicle then crossed the road and struck a small child.
Photo by Prince George's County Police Department

BELTSVILLE, Md. — A school bus driver was arrested on Monday morning after his bus rolled into a small child.

According to the Prince George’s County Police Department, a preliminary investigation of the incident revealed that there were four students on the bus but no driver. Investigators said they believe the driver had parked the bus near a high school and briefly left it unattended.

The bus rolled across the road, struck a boy who was standing on a corner, and then came to rest. Prince George’s police said it was not yet known why the bus rolled across the road.

A Baltimore County auxiliary police officer who witnessed the accident rushed to the scene to help. He pulled the boy from underneath the bus and stayed with him until paramedics arrived and transported the boy to the hospital.

The four students who were on the bus were also transported to the hospital with minor injuries.

Prince George’s police said later in the day that all five children had been released from the hospital.

Police arrested 61-year-old Arturo Roberto Harris, a Prince George’s County Public Schools bus driver. Harris faces multiple charges related to the incident, including reckless endangerment, leaving a child unattended and several traffic offenses.


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Read more about: driver training, law enforcement, Maryland, school bus crash


justin kay    |    Jun 16, 2014 09:20 AM

I can't believe that happenned

justin kay    |    Jun 16, 2014 09:20 AM

WOW, A LOT OF COMMENTS WITH VENOM,DO ANY OF YOU REALLY KNOW THIS GUY OR WHAT WAS GOING ON PRIOR TO THIS INCIDENT HAPPENING?? ALL OF YOU BETTER STAY ALERT, THINGS HAPPEN QUITE QUICKLY WHEN THEY HAPPEN. I'M NOT EXCUSING, BUT CAREFUL POINTING AND BEING JUDGE AND JURY.

jack    |    Apr 11, 2014 01:08 PM

In reply to carolina girl I can add the following. The driver's seat already has a driver's seat bottom sensor and that is how it warns if the seat belt is being worn (with a red dash warning indicator) What disturbs me is how outfits like Zonar and the companies spend mega thousands on driver shadowing devices. They assume that will assure safety. The drivers I see doing pre-trips with Zonar (or similar) spend way more time satisfying the unit's querks and upload need, versus actually looking for potential hazards. So in extremely rare occurences a driver leaves the seat failing to secure the park brake. Trust me, it will happen again. With an easy fix device to prevent a run-away driver-less bus should they be looking into this?

BeeBopEh    |    Apr 10, 2014 10:42 AM

The responsibility for the children was on the driver! We can't keep adding components to buses due to driver irresponsibility! There are consequences for irresponsible acts. If your child were on the bus, you'd be looking at the driver - NOT calling the bus manufacturers asking why they didn't add yet another costly component to the bus!! get real!

carolina girl    |    Apr 10, 2014 07:35 AM

It is likely only the Police and the driver know what really happened causing the bus to roll like this. The Police have already laid enough charges against the driver. This sort of thing also rarely happens when truck drivers forget to secure a parking brake and leave their vehicle. Maybe the bright bulbs that design these buses could arrange a sensor where if the driver's seat is not occupied, and rolling begins, the park brake automatically applies. They put enough other pricey crap on-board that to trace-out what drivers should be doing and when, etc. Then they rat-out to the nearest satellite and the company office (eg. Zonar, etc.) Why not spend those big bucks on something useful like a park brake gets set assurance??

BeeBopEh    |    Apr 09, 2014 02:21 PM

In California it is my understanding that drivers get out of there buses with children on, to cross students on the left hand side pick up. If this is really true I think this may and can happen again.

Brian    |    Apr 09, 2014 11:51 AM

There is no reason that a driver should leave any child unattended on a bus. Evidentally he also didnt check to see if his parking brake was engaged. Prayers go out to the families of all involved.

Tina    |    Apr 09, 2014 05:32 AM

Driver's know better than to leave the bus with students on board.... Shame on him he deserves what every happens to him. Tom

Tom Kurtz    |    Apr 09, 2014 02:53 AM

This is ridiculous. There is no reason good enough for leaving those children unattended on the bus. I'm assuming the bus ruled because it wasn't parked properly, how can you not check and double check that when you have students on? I know everyone makes mistakes but these mistakes are ignorant and could have cost a child his life.

Jessica    |    Apr 08, 2014 05:21 PM

Also, this guy came VERY close to being charged with vehicular homicide if the child on the corner would have died from his carelessness.

Ken Lego    |    Apr 08, 2014 04:29 PM

This is inexcusable! You NEVER leave children unattended on a school bus. This classifies as child endangerment in my book. This guy needs to have the book thrown at him!!! (I`ve been a bus driver for 40 years) It`s idiots like this that give bus drivers a bad name!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ken Lego    |    Apr 08, 2014 04:26 PM

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