Clark County School District officials have confirmed three frightening bus crashes in recent weeks, two of which involved bus drivers under the influence of alcohol. These incidents leave parents enraged, saddened, and hesitant to entrust their children to the CCSD bus system.
What Are The Details of The Crash?
The crash that took place in the Northeast and did not involve a drunk driver was a matter of a sedan and the school bus colliding in the center of an intersection, and the school bus veering off into a fence. The 70-year-old driver of the sedan was killed on the scene, and over a dozen middle-school children from the school bus were taken to the nearby hospitals. Police reported that 36 children total were injured in that crash. The driver of the school bus, 40-year-old Dawn Rice, also sustained moderate injuries.
Capt. Ken Young of the Clark County School District Police Department praised what he called “a great response from our driver” in removing the children from the bus after the crash and providing “excellent care” after the collision until police and the fire department arrived on the scene. “This could have been worse,” Young stated and continued to celebrate Dawn Rice’s efforts post-collision.
A seventh-grader on the bus at the time, Kristiana Norris, was sitting with her friend toward the back of the bus at the time of the accident, which she described as fast and frightening. “We heard like a honking… and then we turned, and we flipped over, and everyone was screaming,” she stated. She also shared that two of her friends were able to open the emergency exit after a few minutes, at which time the kids were able to crawl out.
An eighth-grader, Taiwan Turner, was on the bus with his little brother and reported that the bus had a green light to pass through the intersection when the crash took place and that the other car, the sedan with the 70-year-old driver, ran a red light. “I thought it was a dream or something,” Taiwan said. “…it was a nightmare. I didn’t know if it was real.”
Turner reported that Dawn Rice had tried to avoid the crash at the last minute by veering off into the desert – a fenced lot adjacent to the roadway.
Other Bus Crashes Involving Alcohol
In another disturbing bus incident, this one on April 26th, Tasianna Caver, age 28, will face DUI charges after crashing a school bus with no students on board into a vehicle near Desert Inn and Cabana Drive. The driver was immediately released from employment. She will now have to work with an experienced Las Vegas DUI attorney to answer to the charges against her.
Then, on April 29th, an unnamed CCDD bus driver crashed into a “fixed object” near Craig Ranch Regional Park in North Las Vegas. This time, students were on board, but luckily, no one was injured. The driver had been drinking and was immediately “released from employment” CCDD officials said. “District bus drivers are held to a zero-tolerance standard for drugs and alcohol,” reported CCSD spokesperson Mauricio Marin.