By Zach Osowski
The Herald Bulletin
ANDERSON, Ind. —
Four students were transported to the hospital and two others were checked for injuries after two Anderson Community Schools buses were involved in an accident Monday afternoon on Madison Avenue.
An ACS official said the injuries did not appear to be serious.
Jordan Hicks, a sophomore at Anderson High School, said he was riding home from school on bus No. 318, traveling north on Madison Avenue.
The bus driver tried to cross the intersection of 29th Street to let an ambulance through, according to Hicks, when the bus rear-ended ACS bus No. 311, which had stopped in front of No. 318.
Anderson Police Department spokesman Joel Sandefur said, in a statement, that the ambulance was traveling west on 29th Street. The driver of bus No. 311 stopped because the driver was unsure of which direction the ambulance was going, according to Sandefur. Bus No. 318 was unable to stop in time and rear-ended No. 311.
The names of the bus drivers were not available Monday evening.
Three of the hospitalized students had been on bus No. 311 and one had been on bus No. 318. It was unclear Monday evening how fast bus 318 was traveling before impact.
"The bus in front of us stopped, and we hit the back of it pretty hard," Hicks said. "A lot of people hit their throats and necks" on the seats.
A few students were fitted with neck braces and helped out of the buses, which are not outfitted with seat belts. Some of the students were placed on backboards to stabilize their spines and were then wheeled to ambulances on gurneys.
The students were taken to St. Vincent Anderson Regional Hospital and Community Hospital Anderson for treatment.
Chief Operating Officer Joe Cronk, who is in charge of transportation for ACS, went to the scene after the crash. He was responsible for making sure the students who needed medical attention got it from paramedics.
Cronk said six students, who complained of pain, received medical attention. Four of them warranted a trip to the hospital as a precaution. None of the injuries appeared serious, according to Cronk.
"If you complain of pain, we're going to take it seriously," Cronk said.
Sandefur said Monday's crash was the first Anderson Community Schools bus accident of the year that involved injuries.
Several parents went to the accident scene Monday to pick up students who were not treated for injuries.
Follow Zach Osowski on Twitter @Osowski_THB, or call 640-4847.