12-Year-Old Struck, Killed by Car in Georgia While Running to Catch School Bus
A 12-year-old who was running in an attempt to catch a school bus in Statesboro, Ga., was struck by a car and killed on Jan. 11. The Bulloch County Coroner told WPDE that the student, Eli Bradley, was waiting for the school bus in his mother's car and thought the bus was driving away from him. He got out of the car and ran toward the bus, at which point a car driving in the opposite direction hit the boy and killed him. The Bulloch County School District reported that the bus was yielding to oncoming traffic at a nearby intersection and preparing to turn onto a neighboring street at the time. The bus was not at a bus stop.
6-Year-Old on Go-Kart Run Over by Georgia School Bus
A 6-year-old child is recovering after being run over by a school bus on Jan. 9. The school bus was dropping off students in River Island, Ga. Sheriff's deputies said the boy was riding a go-kart across the street from the school bus. At some point, the child reversed the go-kart for unknown reasons as the bus began to pull forward, causing the school bus driver's side rear tire to run over the child. The Macon Telegraph reported that parents of students on the bus were called to pick up their children. No one else was hurt. The Columbia County School District reported that investigators determined the school bus driver was not at fault.
As of Jan. 11, the injured child was listed in stable condition.
Mother of Student Who Fell Out of South Carolina School Bus Sues School District
The mother of a Horry County, S.C., student is suing the school district and a bus driver after her child fell out of a moving school district in February 2022. The lawsuit stated that before her child was picked up at her normal stop, students on the bus were acting rowdy. According to WPDE, the bus driver, identified as John Doe in the lawsuit, reportedly did not address the students' behavior, which the mother claimed encouraged the behavior. Her child sat in the emergency row exit of the school bus because another student was in her assigned seat, according to court documents.
While the children on the bus were playing and engaging with the child, the emergency door popped open and the woman's child fell out of the moving school bus, according to the lawsuit. The student hit her head on the ground and sustained road rash on her body. The bus was reportedly moving at about 20 mph at the time of the incident.
The driver reportedly did not stop immediately, even though the emergency alarm on the bus was going off, and continued driving for about 30 seconds, until another student told him a student had fallen out.
It's reported that the driver did not perform a sufficient pre-trip inspection to make sure the emergency exit door was properly secured.
A Horry County Schools spokesperson said they do not comment on matters related to pending litigation.
Students, School Bus Driver Injured in Kentucky Crash
Eight students and their school bus driver were injured in a crash in Christian County, Ky., on Jan. 9. WKRN reported that 36 students of varying ages were aboard the bus when it was involved in a single-vehicle crash during its morning route. WKDZ Radio reported that deputies responded to the scene and determined the bus, for unknown reasons, ran off the road and hit an embankment. Deputies said the driver stated they may have blacked out before the crash.
Eight students and the school bus driver were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment for non-life-threatening injuries.
Illinois School Bus Driver Cited in Crash
A Hinckley Big-Rock, Ill., School District 429 school bus driver was cited by police after a crash that resulted in the bus overturning while students were onboard. Shaw Local News Network reported that none of the six students aboard the bus on Jan. 10 were injured. The driver, Elizabeth Fox was cited for failture to yield at a stop intersection, according to the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office. She reportedly drove the bus through the intersection, leading to a collision with a pickup truck. The crash caused the school bus to turn on its side.
District officials said staff members were at the scene after the crash to communicate with families and students affected.
Teen Left on Side of Virginia Highway After School Bus Fight
A Richmond (Va.) Public Schools mother spoke out after her teenage daughter was left on the side of a highway after a fight broke out on a school bus ride in December. A school spokesperson told WRIC that the teen's school bus driver pulled over to the side of the road to attempt to de-escalate a situation on the bus. The teen then exited the rear emergency door of the bus. The spokesperson explained that the bus driver asked the teen to get back on the bus, but the teen's mother said her daughter refused because she felt uncomfortable. As a result, the driver left the student on the side of the road. The teen called her mother to ask her to pick her up.
A school spokesperson released a statement to WRIC, saying the driver did not report the incident, and is now on leave as a result. The employee relations team is investigating the incident to determine whether additional employment actions need to be made. The statement went on to say that the district emphasizes the importance of not exiting a bus in dangerous traffic conditions.
New Transportation Safety Measures Coming after Pennsylvania Incident
The Greater Johnstown (Pa.) School District superintendent said new transportation safety measures are coming after a man was arrested on Jan. 4 for boarding a school bus. The man, 20-year-old Ivan Miranda, did not cause any trouble on the trip to the school, the superintendent told The Tribute-Democrat. He simply entered the bus and sat down with the rest of the students. When students alerted the substitute bus driver that the man was not a student, the driver contacted the school to request that a school resource officer -- a police officer at the local police department -- meet the bus at the school. Miranda was immediately arrested.
According to a criminal complaint, several female students told police that Miranda had been following them and acting bizarre. One student's father reportedly contacted police later that day, saying Miranda was outside the family's home at midnight on New Year's Eve and refused to leave.
Miranda was charged with trespassing, unauthorized school bus entry, and stalking. Court records revealed Miranda faced similar charges in November 2022.
The Tribune-Democrat reported that administrators are considering several new security measures, and may provide official student identification cards to be presented when boarding buses.
North Carolina School Bus Shooting Hoax Calls Prompt Investigation
A series of phone calls to 911 falsely reporting shootings on Alamance Burlington, North Carolina, school buses prompted an investigation by the Alamance County Sheriff's Office. On Jan. 4, authorities began receiving phone calls asbout shootings taking place on school buses. WFMY reported that sheriff's deputies pulled over area school buses to ensure passengers were safe. A public information officer for Alamance Burlington Schools said drivers were unaware of the calls when they were pulled over. Deputies never found a shooting, or the person who made the fake calls. They believe the caller used a phone that can only make 911 calls (disconnected cell phones still have this capability), which can be hard to trace.
Deputies are reviewing bus video and working with phone providers to try to track down the phone and the caller. All school buses for the district are equipped with cameras that record audio and videos, as well as two-way radios.
A post on the school district's Facebook page referred to the caller as a student on a bus, but deputies told WFMY they could not confirm that.