YADKIN COUNTY — The N.C. Highway Patrol is investigating a bus accident that sent eleven people to the hospital Tuesday morning, including the bus driver.
“It was coming on a slight downhill through a curve and went off the road on the opposite side and overturned,” explained Supt. Todd Martin. “Twenty-one Forbush Middle and High school students were on this bus.”
13-year-old Austin Williams was one of those students.
“I started feeling the road get kind of rough when we hit that embankment, and that’s when the bus driver told us to hold on and that’s when we turned over,” Austin said.
Austin managed to keep his phone in his hand. “As soon as it happened, I knew to call 911 to get the ambulance there because the bus driver — her hand was cut up pretty bad and some other kid had a wound in his head,” he said.
Bus driver Gail Cline’s daughter says her mother did have to get stiches in her hand and was released from the hospital around lunchtime. Cline was also worried about how her students were doing.
The school system says Cline has been driving for Yadkin County Schools for 29 years.
Highway Patrol has not released a cause of the accident or said if there was anything wrong with the bus before the accident happened.
This afternoon, the school system reported most of the ten students who were transported to the hospital had been treated and released from Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and Yadkin Valley Community Hospital.
“When you get word that everybody’s going to be okay there’s just a sense of relief,” Martin said. “We’re very grateful this morning that injuries weren’t worse than they were. We’re very thankful to all the emergency personnel and school administration that responded so quickly.”
“I know God was with us and protected us,” added Austin.
His father Randy Williams agreed. “I’m thankful for everybody keeping their cool, no fatalities, the Lord being with everyone. Maybe something positive can come out of this.”
He said he’d like to see more school buses have seat belts.