MUSCOGEE COUNTY, Ga. — A school bus driver here was killed and all seven students aboard the bus were injured when it crashed into a tree on Monday morning, the Ledger-Enquirer reports.
Bus driver Roy Newman was driving students to school when his bus left the road for an unknown reason and crashed head-on into the tree, Columbus Fire Marshal Ricky Shores told the newspaper. Four of the students were taken to the hospital and the other three were treated at the scene, Valerie Fuller, the communications director for the Muscogee County School District (MCSD), told the Ledger-Enquirer.
A police report obtained by the newspaper stated that Newman’s vision was not obscured and the vehicle didn’t have any known defects when he lost control of it along a straight, level section of a two-lane road. The bus had been traveling northbound, but then moved across the south lane and traveled 202 feet before colliding with a large tree. The report also stated that the weather was clear, the road was dry, and the bus did not collide with another vehicle, according to the Ledger-Enquirer.
Joe Wills, another bus driver for the school district, called Newman a “good driver” and told the newspaper that “he cared a whole lot about his job and his kids.” Wills also said that the bus that crashed was a replacement for one that broke down earlier Monday morning. He said he was directed to pick up some of Newman’s students at around 7:15 a.m., about 30 minutes before the wreck, near where the crash occurred, he said.
David Lewis, MCSD’s superintendent, said in a news release obtained by the Ledger-Enquirer, “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and loved ones of our bus driver, Mr. Roy Newman, and the children and their families who were involved in the accident. … We would like to thank and commend all of the emergency personnel who responded quickly to the scene with tremendous expertise and professionalism.”
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