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Multiple school bus accidents concern Aldine ISD

By GILBERT HOFFMAN

ALDINE ISD– Two weeks of bad news from the school transportation department included a fatality accident on E. Mt. Houston road last week, and a major skidding accident on I-45 this week that sent about 20 school children to the hospital for check-ups, and closed that highway for about two hours while emergency workers helped the injured and sorted out the details. The school bus was being driven by a teacher, according to AISD authorities, who was trained and accredited to drive the bus. It occurred on Tuesday, about 5 p.m., as the bus headed for a basketball game out of the area. On board were students and adults.

However, due to a wet road from inclement weather, the bus went out of control and struck another vehicle, and ended up across two lanes of traffic. At that point, another car couldn’t stop, and hit the broadside of the bus, wedging itself under the bus. A secondary accident also happened, not involving the bus, between a truck and an SUV as they came upon the scene. Witnesses said the truck driver did a complete turn on the pavement, and actually avoided hitting the bus with this maneuver.

According to Superintendent Kujawa, in an interview with the Northeast News, when this type of accident occurs, the driver is removed from any additional service until an investigation is conducted, and then further training is required prior to again driving.

No serious injuries were reported to anyone in the 3 vehicles, but all the children were taken to the hospital for examination.

Dr. Kujawa stated that the transportation department has not had any unusual amount of accidents this month or this year, and that in fact in comparison with previous years, the incidents are less. Even so, she is reviewing the situation with the idea that further procedures might be required, she said.

In last week’s accident, a school bus hit a car head-on as it turned from a side street into oncoming traffic on Mt. Houston road, east of US59. Police cited the bus driver as at fault, according to the initial report, saying the bus failed to yield the right of way. Three passengers in the car were injured, and the passenger in the front seat later died at Ben Taub Hospital from injuried in the accident. Except for the driver, there was no one else on the school bus, according to the sheriff’s report.