School bus hits student, crashes into building in North Charleston
NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - A crash involving a school bus in North Charleston sent seven people to the hospital Tuesday morning.
Police say the bus struck a 15-year-old who was on the sidewalk and then crashed against the front of the Neighbor Store shortly before 8 a.m. The bus was turning onto Montague Avenue from Luella Avenue and lost control, North Charleston Police spokesman Harve Jacobs said.
The pedestrian who was struck was taken to the hospital with injuries, North Charleston Fire Department Assistant Chief Christan Rainey said. North Charleston Police spokesman Harve Jacobs described those injuries as minor.
Charleston County School District officials say eight students from North Charleston Creative Arts were on the bus at the time of the crash. Four of those students and the bus driver were taken to the hospital.
The 15-year-old who was struck by the bus was one of two high school students waiting to be picked up when the crash happened. The second student was struck by debris and also taken to the hospital, Rainey said.
Rainey said the initial call came into dispatch around 7:45 a.m. and arriving firefighters began to treat students on the bus. He said the children on the bus were elementary-aged students.
“I’m just curious about the kids,” Neighbor Store owner Mehoul Patel said. “I mean, there was kids inside of the bus and people told me that a couple of kids are injured. I mean, so I don’t know what exactly happened with them. I mean, it’s OK what happened to the store, but I’m just worried about the kids. I hope they’re OK.”
The district said staff and counselors would be made available on-site and at the school to help any students who need it.
North Charleston building officials arrived to check out damage to the building and declared it unsafe.
“I hope everything inside is OK and everything is OK with the kids,” Patel said. “I’ll talk to the landlord, and we’ll think about how to reconstruct the store, but I mean, I’m just praying to God that the kids will be OK.”
The bus was towed from the scene at approximately 1 p.m.
The crash remains under investigation by the North Charleston Police Department.
First Student, which operated the bus, released a brief statement on the crash, which read in part:
We are thankful no serious injuries are being reported right now, including to our driver.
We are assisting local authorities with their investigation into what happened. Our driver has been removed from service as we also review the incident.
Given this is an active investigation, we are unable to comment further.
The front entrance of Neighbor Store has since been boarded up with plywood.
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