News and Tribune

August 14, 2013

Bus crash sparks safety discussion

West Clark officials eye devices after accident

By JEROD CLAPP
jerod.clapp@newsandtribune.com

> SOUTHERN INDIANA — A crash involving a West Clark Community Schools bus on Tuesday that left several students sore has sparked a discussion about transportation safety among district officials.

While no students were seriously injured in the accident, in which the school bus was rear-ended, assistant Superintendent John Reed said the district is already looking at ways it can equip buses to get students off buses in crashes more easily.

“It has stimulated a conversation about some different kinds of devices we might use and how to get little, little kids exiting off the bus in a way that we could make sure was orderly,” Reed said.

He said one device, which uses belts with loops that students can hold onto, can keep them in file easily to give adults the ability to know exactly where every student is upon disembarking.

Reed said the 10 Southern Indiana children who were transported to hospitals weren’t seriously injured in the crash, though several complained of soreness.

The bus was carrying 31 kindergarten to high school age students to the Henryville schools, according to Reed. He said they were taken to hospitals either in Jeffersonville or Louisville.

“I think it was handled quickly,” Reed said. “We knew almost instantly that something happened and our transportation director was able to get out there quickly. We were able to get the communication out to other bus drivers and instructed them on what they needed to do in terms of staying away.”

Clark County sheriff’s Maj. Chuck Adams told WHAS-TV a woman driving a car became distracted while tending to an infant. He said she looked up just before the impact to see that the bus had stopped on a county road near an Interstate 65 interchange at the community of Memphis.

Calls to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office in regards to the condition of the other driver and her child were not returned.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report.