Number of Injured Students Rises in Multi-School Bus Accident

By Stephanie Parkinson

May 23, 2013 Updated Jun 11, 2013 at 12:19 PM EDT

NORTH WEBSTER, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) - The number of injured students is now at least 80 after four school buses crashed into one another in Kosciusko County. The crash happened on State Road 13 in North Webster Wednesday afternoon.

It’s a scene the school district’s superintendent hoped to never see.

"This truly was a tragic one, to have four buses and that many students involved,” said Dr. Tom Eddington, Wawasee Community Schools.

The crash happened after one of the school buses was stopped to let off a child. There were two other buses behind it. That's when a fourth bus crashed into the third, triggering a chain reaction.

We know at least 50 students were taken to the hospital from the crash scene. Another 30 were treated for minor injuries. But the bus driver in the fourth bus had to be air lifted to Fort Wayne, and underwent emergency surgery.

The Wawasee School Superintendent says he spent Wednesday night at the hospitals visiting many of the children who were hurt.

"We were just there to reassure, and let them know we were thinking about them. We listened more than we talked, the students had been through an experience,” said Eddington.

Dr. Eddington describes his ten minute drive to the scene of the school bus crash as the longest ten minutes of his day. But says once he arrived the outpouring of support from the community gave him relief.

"I've had so many reassuring e-mails from community members and parents who have said we're such a great community, we saw the people come together. There is just a sense in this community that things are ok, and will be,” said Eddington.

Investigators say they know the fourth bus caused the crash but still the question remains, why did that fourth bus not stop?

"There's a lot of loose, different factors that have to come together before we can actually have a complete confirmation on exactly what happened. I think we have some speculatory information and stuff that they're working on, at this point in time they can't speak about. But it could be a substantial amount of time before we actually have a complete and formal ruling on actually what occurred,” said F./Sgt. Chad Hill, Kosciusko County Sheriff's Department.

Sgt. Hill expects the investigation to be complete in about two weeks.

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