Child killed in school bus wreck
April 1st, 2011
12:28 PM ET

Child killed in school bus wreck

One child died and several were injured Friday in Bolivar County, Mississippi, when a school bus collided with a tractor-trailer on a foggy stretch of road, officials said.

The bus was carrying elementary-school and high-school students when the accident happened around 7 a.m. Friday, said Cedrick Ellis, superintendent of the Shaw School District, in Shaw, Mississippi.

A "younger child" was killed in the accident, said Dr. J.O. Trice, a deputy county coroner.

Ellis said the bus and a tractor-trailer loaded with gravel collided, causing both vehicles to overturn.

The Mississippi Highway Safety Patrol is investigating, Ellis said. It was not clear if the fog contributed to the crash.

Filed under: Mississippi
soundoff (115 Responses)
  1. jonny

    I really wish democrats who have had control would have passed seat belt laws. They are directly to blame for this death.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • yeahright

      In case you are not aware, seat belt laws are on a state by state basis, and in Mississippi, the Republicans control the governorship and the senate. Please give credit where credit is due.

      April 1, 2011 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  2. TTB

    Seatbelts! I havent heard of many buses catching fire lately but it seems a bus accident of some sort is almost a daily occurence. If we have to wear them in a car, we should wear them on buses!

    April 1, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  3. former bus driver

    Tne adult, 72 children and 72 seat belts is also a disaster waiting to happen.I would not want to be that driver in the event of a fire and half the children are panic stricken and can't get out of their seat belts and perish because the driver could not be at 72 places fast enough. That's why I stopped driving a bus. The responsibility was to great. P.S. I drove a school bus for 12 years and loved every minute of it but when you talk of putting seat belts on school busses imagine if it were your child that couldn't get off simply because a seat belt held them down.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  4. KandyKane

    I agree with the one poster who is a bus driver. In an accident, how on earth do you expect the bus driver to get 50 kids unbuckled and out of a burning bus, or a bus that has gone off the road into a lake and is sinking? If you want seatbelts, then you will want to make sure your kid is in the first 4 seats behind the driver, because anything past that the driver may not be able to get to in time. And no, most kids will not be able to unbuckle themselves quickly in a time of panic...especially elementary kids.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  5. RG

    For all the seat belt comments, it should probably be noted that the story doesn't provide any evidence that seat belts or the lack there-of had anything to do with the injuries sustained in the crash. The most comprehensive study on the subject found minimal benefits from providing seat belts in buses. Indeed, you're more likely to be killed getting on or off the bus than while riding. It'd cost 32-38 million per life saved (or 100-125 million more over the life cycle of one fleet) to add seat belts to buses in Alabama alone (where a grand total of 5 students died on school buses since 1977). Plus, seat belts can cause injuries as well, because the youngest riders would need booster seats or other safety measures to ensure proper fit. As for those driving their kids to school because the bus doesn't have seat belts...well, sadly you just significantly increased the odds of your child dying in a wreck on the way to school.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Brian

    "If that bus were to catch fire, would you want me to undo your child's seatbelt first, or someone's child? "................

    At this point accidents are the main problem – not fires. It's the bean counters who don't want to pay for seat belts. These buses could be engineered better with both factors in mind.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Tom S

    Everyone on here is screaming for seat belts but could you imagine getting kids to wear them? I have to tell my 2 children to put them on everytime we get into a car and they whine. Could you imagine a school bus driver having to make sure each student buckles up when he picks a few kids up at a stop? It would take hours to finally get them to school. Sure they should have them but you can almost wager that less than 2% would wear them and if they did they would be teased by the other kids until they no longer wore them. Millions of kids ride school buses each and everyday and I can bet there are probably more children killed on their way to school riding with their parents or with other kids in one day than there are on a school bus in a year.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jeff Frank - Ohio

    Not saying or accusing, but statistics show, persons on cell phones talking or texting while behind the wheel, are the equivelent of being 75% inebriated by intoxicants. And people, because of these wonderful technologies openly refuse to believe it. Seat belts are fine, whether they are affordable or not, but childrens' safety being jepordized by the conduct of either driver could render any device useless. That's like saying, yeah seatbelts, just to allow misconduct. 🙂

    April 1, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  9. TiredODaCrap

    Those of you demanding seat belts in school buses it won't happen. Even the most remote possibility of a child being trapped in a seatbelt after wreck – or being injured by a seat belt in a wreck, takes that off of the table. The first minor traffic accident where a child came back with a bruise from a seat belt would bankrupt the school system, as well as put the bus company out of business. Think of litigious society that we live in and use a little common sense in your arguments!

    April 1, 2011 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  10. dike

    MR.spenceteeth, I am sure you drive without your seat belt, and believe in fate!!! dont do that to your kids....

    April 1, 2011 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Mookie

    My almost 4-year old booster seat rider can undo a seatbelt buckle. I'm sure with daily school bus riding practice, a 5 year old can get the hang of undoing a seatbelt bucklet as well. And yes, in an emergency things will be different but then things with or without a seatbelt will be different, in an emergency. Who is to say that the bus driver is even able of unrestraining or opening the emergency door after an accident? Why not prepare for the scenarios you can control and prepare for rather than the ones we wring our hands over?

    If kids are using seatbelt buckles as weapons or are not following the rules of the bus, then you have a different problem altogether that requires disciplinary action and intervention from the school, not the school bus company. We don't disallow inmates from having toothbrushes just because they can make a weapon out of it.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
  12. In God's care

    My love and prayers to this dear family. Your little angel is in God's loving arms.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • ?

      Why did your 'god' allow this to happen in the first place? Oh yeah, because there is no such thing.

      April 1, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • A God believer

      I can not believe a rude person..would jump in with That comment...Things do happen for a reason..I know about the First Amme... But you are out of line.....?? You could not be more original????

      April 1, 2011 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • ktee

      I agree. Please don't disparage people trying to show sympathy.

      April 1, 2011 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. oldstuff

    Everything is so automatic these days - perhaps there could be a safety button at the front of the bus that could be pushed to release all the seat belts, in addition to the manual release option.
    One of the biggest benefit of seatbelts in busses is to get kids in the habit of wearing seatbelts all the time. The majority of car crash fatalities of teenagers in my area occur because they were NOT wearing seat belts.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. cheryl

    I don't let my kids ride the bus anymore because i dont feel like there safe, to many kids getting hurt or killed if they wreck, Its ashame a child has to die because the goverment is to worried about how much money it cost to install seat belts. If us as parents have to make sure ours kids are in seat belts in cars then it should apply to buses also.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Mookie

    And my children have each only once undone their seatbelts while the car was moving. Only once. Not wearing a seatbelt in my car is a deal breaker, even for my own mother. They can walk for all I care and my kids' friends know it too. If you want the child lock reinstated on your door, go ahead and try opening it before the car comes to a complete and full stop. That happened on accident once and only once. The safety, health and security of my children is my number 1 priority.

    April 1, 2011 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
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