R-I Superintendent urges motorists to use caution around school buses
By Ethan Colbert
Bowling Green R-I Superintendent Dr. Matt Frederickson is renewing his request for motorists to slow down and use caution when traveling near school buses after a motorist rear ended a school bus south of Bowling Green on Thursday. According to school district and emergency response officials, on Thursday afternoon, a Bowling Green R-I School District bus was traveling southbound on Highway 161. A motorist attempted to pass the bus, moving their vehicle into the northbound lane. The motorist then swerved back into the southbound lane to avoid oncoming traffic. However, the motorist struck the rear of the bus, before proceeding off of the roadway.
According to Frederickson, there were 34 students on the bus at the time of the crash. The students were all bound for their respective homes in the Ashley, St. Clement, and New Hartford communities. No students were injured in the crash.
In an interview at the scene, Frederickson said that motorists needed to remember that the school buses travel at slower speeds and that they carry important passengers.
“We need people to keep a safe distance and realize that they are carrying our community’s most precious resource, our children,” Frederickson said. “We need people to remember to be very careful when they are approaching a bus because that bus is trying to safely take children to school or bring them back to their homes. We are very fortunate that everyone today was not injured, but as this community knows too well, a bus accident can often go in the other direction.”
On February 25, 2004, Keith Breshears, an employee of the city’s public works department, and Samantha Griffith, a freshman at BGHS, were both killed when a school bus struck a city vehicle.
Frederickson said that the bus in Thursday’s accident would be repaired and inspected before being used to transport students.