MORRISTOWN, N.J. — A school bus driver who was criminally charged in a crash in May 2018 that killed a student and a teacher and injured over 40 passengers has been indicted.
Hudy Muldrow Sr., 78, was indicted on Wednesday, according to a news release from the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office. In addition to the initial two counts of reckless vehicular homicide, the indictment also charges Muldrow, who drove for Paramus Public Schools, with 25 counts of assault by auto and 16 additional counts of assault by auto as a disorderly persons offense.
The indictment stems from the May 17 crash between Muldrow’s bus and a dump truck in Mount Olive Township. As SBF previously reported, Muldrow allegedly attempted to cross lanes of traffic to get to an official-use-only access point to make a U-turn after missing an exit and collided with the truck, which was traveling in one of those lanes. Muldrow’s bus was one of three that was transporting students to Waterloo Village, a restored 19th-century town, for a fifth-grade field trip.
As a result, the Prosecutor’s Office alleged that Muldrow’s reckless operation of a school bus caused the deaths of a teacher and a student aboard the bus, and caused injuries to 40 additional bus passengers, plus the driver of a dump truck.
Muldrow also, as SBF previously reported, had his driver’s license suspended and was issued driving violations, each more than a dozen times.
Muldrow is scheduled for an arraignment on April 29.
The fatal crash spurred several pieces of legislation intending to increase driver oversight and bolster school bus safety. Most recently, Gov. Phil Murphy signed three bills into law in February: one that appropriates $250,000 for a required study of safety of school bus passengers in emergency situations; another that requires school district transportation supervisors with less than 11 years of experience to take a certification course; and another requiring the suspension of a bus driver’s school bus endorsement for 90 days if the driver is convicted of three or more motor vehicle moving violations in a three-year period.
Murphy signed four other school bus safety bills into law in December. Those laws address federal regulations compliance, proof of physical fitness, regular safety training, and communication about drivers with suspended or revoked licenses.
Additionally, in August, New Jersey changed its law on seat belts, requiring lap-shoulder belts instead of lap belts, as previously required, on all school buses.