A school bus driver was partially ejected and pinned under the bus she was driving after crashing it near Salyersville, Kentucky, on November 14, according to local news reports.
Magoffin County school officials told WKYT that the bus dropped off the pavement and into a ditch, then reentered the roadway. It appeared the driver overcorrected, crossing both lanes and over an embankment, striking and cutting a utility pole in half. The bus landed on the passenger side. Kentucky State Police are investigating the cause of the crash.
At a press conference, officials would not confirm or deny whether the driver was wearing a seat belt. Superintendent Chris Meadows did confirm that the driver is a full-time employee and has been employed with the district for several years. The bus was not equipped with seat belts for the students.
Administrators said 18 students and the driver were on the bus. Magoffin County Judge-Executive Matt Wireman reported that all of the students and the driver were taken from the scene to area hospitals. Meadows said all students onboard had some type of injury, with injuries ranging from minor to critical. At least three people -- the school bus driver and two students -- were taken from the scene by helicopter. Most of the other students were transported by ambulance, while some were taken by their parents. The district has made counseling services available for students in need. Last week, another student from the district was killed in a UTV accident, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader.
Administrators said an "all-call" alert was sent out to area rescue agencies, and several area agencies responded.
"The district would like to thank everyone that extended a helping hand at the scene of the accident. Please keep all families in your thoughts and prayers," Meadows wrote in a statement sent to School Bus Fleet.
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear tweeted about the accident, urging people to be in prayer for those involved.
Kentucky, we have some tough news. There has been a serious bus accident in Magoffin County involving children. @KyStatePolice is on the scene and we are responding swiftly. Please join me in praying for all those involved. We will continue to share updates as available. ^AB— Governor Andy Beshear (@GovAndyBeshear) November 14, 2022