MOUNT OLIVE, N.J. — The school bus driver who was involved in a crash that killed two passengers and left over 40 injured last week had his license suspended and was issued driving violations, each over a dozen times, state officials said.
As SBF previously reported, the crash happened on the morning of May 17 when one of three school buses was traveling on the highway, headed to Waterloo Village, a restored 19th-century town, for a field trip. The collision between the bus and the dump truck caused the undercarriage of the bus to be completely ripped away from the body of the bus, and the body was left on its side in the median. A student and a teacher were killed, and the other 43 people aboard the bus were hospitalized. Video from a state Department of Transportation traffic camera reportedly shows that the driver, Hudy Muldrow Sr., 77, made a sudden U-turn at a median after apparently having missed the exit for Waterloo Village.
Muldrow had a valid commercial driver’s license (CDL) and school bus endorsement at the time of the crash, Mairin Bellack, a spokeswoman for the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission told Lehigh Valley Live, but he had a long history of suspensions and violations over the last 43 years.
Between 1975 and 2017, the newspaper reports, Muldrow’s driver’s license was suspended 14 times. The most recent suspension was issued in December 2017 for unpaid parking tickets, according to CNN, and Muldrow had his license restored on Jan. 3. Six of the suspensions were for parking violations, and seven were for administrative or paperwork issues. Muldrow also received 16 driving violations for speeding, and was cited for an improper lane change in 2010. There is no indication in his driving record as to whether he was driving a school bus or personal vehicle at the time, according to Lehigh Valley Live.
Additionally, Muldrow’s driving record shows that he was involved in five crashes before last week’s crash, though Bellack noted to Lehigh Valley Live that there is no indication whether Muldrow was the driver or the passenger in those crashes, or who was at fault.
Dr. Michele Robinson, the superintendent of Paramus Public Schools, which Muldrow drove for, said in a statement to News 4 on Wednesday that she is “shocked, saddened and angry” over news reports regarding Muldrow’s driving record. She added in the statement that the district was not provided information by the state that indicated that Muldrow had any moving violations, and that the district was told that Muldrow was “a driver in good standing and eligible to operate a school bus.”
"If these news reports are true, our community and our children deserved better than to receive incomplete information about his record,” Robinson also said in the statement.
The cause of the crash is still under investigation.