KALB – Rapides Parish, Louisiana – A Rapides Parish school bus from Northwood was involved in a single vehicle accident early Wednesday morning, February 25.
Clyde Washington, of the Rapides Parish School Board, said the accident happened around 6:30 a.m on HWY 121.
According to Washington, 11 children were onboard when the bus hit a patch of thick mud on the roadway near a construction pit. The bus slid and began to topple sideways, scraping the sides and top of the vehicle, before righting itself. The bus, according to the school board, never overturned.
Washington said no life-threatening injuries were reported, citing only “bumps and bruises.” All but one child has been released from the hospital.
Initial investigations show the bus driver was not at fault and is not facing disciplinary action at this time.
Original LSP Release:
Eleven Children Injured in Rapides Parish School Bus Crash
Rapides Parish- Early this morning, a single vehicle crash involving a school bus injured eleven children and the driver. A large amount of mud was on the road, which is considered a factor in the crash.
Troopers responded to the crash around 6:15 a.m., which occurred on LA Hwy 121 south of LA Hwy 496. The crash involved a 2001 International (school bus), driven by Jake D. Lawson, 33, of Boyce. The school bus was northbound on LA Hwy 121 when Lawson encountered the large amount of mud on the roadway. He then lost control and exited the left side of the roadway before the school bus overturned on its side.
All eleven children and the driver received minor to moderate injuries and were transported to local hospitals. The children ranged in age from five to fifteen.
The crash remains under investigation.
DOTD and the Cotile Fire Department assisted in the removal of the mud from the roadway.
Portions of Central and North Louisiana are still experiencing hazardous driving conditions from the current weather. If you must travel, please exercise extreme caution by decreasing your speed, allow extra time to reach your destination, allow extra space between vehicles, and brake gently.
Stayed tuned to local media and LSP Facebook for the latest conditions Troopers are encountering. You may also visit www.511la.org or call 511 for the latest road closures.
If you experience difficulties or witness hazardous situations while on the highway, you may notify the nearest State Police Troop office by dialing *LSP (*577) from your cell phone or contact your local law enforcement agency.