The bus had more than 40 kids on board, and it was just a mile from its first stop to let the youngest children off at Sublimity Elementary, when officials say something caused the driver to lose control and hit a utility pole so hard, it snapped it in half.
“I heard this sound, sounded like a bomb went off in my house,” said Gary Messer, who called for help when he heard the bus hit the pole.
“Well it was just awful, you know a bus load of kids, that's all I was thinking. I went and called 911, as quick as I could,” he said.
Police say the reason the veteran driver lost control and side swiped the utility pole is under investigation. 2 high school students and a middle school student were sent to the hospital. One had glass in the eye, the other complained of back pain. Police won't release the driver's name or age, but school officials credit her with averting a near disaster.
“To her credit, the driver was able to, even with the impact to the pole, to be able to maintain control....to be able to bring it to a safe stop,” said Greg Smith, Laurel County Schools’ Deputy Superintendent.
Deavon Poindexter's daughter was also on the bus.
“She said she was on the front of the bus, the bus was tipping, she thought it was going to flip over,” said Poindexter of her daughter, who she says now is complaining of leg pain.
Poindexter says she's complained about the driver before, from stories her daughter has told her.
“Just several things, she's run into ditches, she says, ‘Mom, she almost hit another car today,’” said Poindexter.
But the deputy superintendent says he’s not aware of any complaints against the driver.
School officials say the driver will be off until the investigation is over, which they say is standard procedure.