Updated 09/17/2012 06:19 PM
Tractor Trailer Hits School Bus; No Serious Injuries
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It happened in a quick, chaotic moment.
"The bus was definitely struck from the rear," said East Pembroke Fire Chief Don Newton.
A Pembroke School bus hurtled onto its side.
"From what I see it could have been a lot worse," said Newton.
"Real bad,” said neighbor Robert Demarest. “Real bad."
Demarest heard the screech of tires and the sickening sound of steel on steel from his home, right across the road.
"I said oh no, not some kids getting hurt. I see all these ambulances around,” explained Demarest.
One pre-K student and a driver were on board the eastbound bus, which was stopped on Route 5 to pick up another student.
"We got dispatched for a tractor trailer into a school bus and a school bus on it's side," Newton said.
"The school bus driver said the lights were on,” said Gary Maha, Genesee County Sheriff. “The truck driver said he didn't see any lights. That doesn't mean they weren't on."
The child on the bus was taken to a hospital for treatment of minor injuries. The drivers of the bus, and the tractor trailer were not hurt. Still multiple fire and EMS companies responded.
“So at that point I go into panic mode with an incident like this," said Newton. "I called for Darien, Alexander, and Oakfield."
"When the call came out it came as a tractor trailer, school bus...with the bus on its side,” Maha said. “We didn't know if the bus was full of young children or not."
Several neighbors said this is just the latest of a number of crashes on this stretch of Route 5. They said in many cases, speed is to blame.
"It should be down to 45 miles per hour from the farm down to the bridge anyways," said Demarest.
The cause of the wreck is still under investigation. First responders...thankful...knowing it could have been a whole lot worse.
"Very fortunate," Maha said.