Bus Carrying Texas Students Plunges Into Alabama Ravine, 1 Dead

Sergio Conner
March 13, 2018

First responders used ropes to rappel down the 50-foot ravine in the middle of Interstate 10 and then had to cut some of the victims from the wreckage, said Baldwin County Sheriff Huey Hoss Mack. The group of students are from Channel View High School near Houston. The students were on a trip from Houston, Texas.

The tour bus, which was transporting a high-school band, crashed off the expressway into a 60ft ravine, injuring between 12 and 20 people, according to a statement from the Sheriff's Office.

The sheriff said it wasn't immediately clear what caused the bus to enter the grassy median, which abruptly ends at a steep embankment where the interstate passes over Cowpen Creek.

Al.com reported that injuries range from minor to critical, and that at least one critically injured passenger was taken to the University of South Alabama Hospital, the only level one trauma center in the region.

Witnesses on the scene tell News 5 both directions of traffic are stopped.

He confirmed that at least one person had died following the accident.

Baldwin County Sheriff's Office Major Anthony Lowery said the bus plunged off Interstate 10 into a deep ravine Tuesday morning, and multiple helicopters are responding.

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"There's at least one confirmed fatality at this point", Lowery said by telephone.

Some were rescued by firefighters, and others were carried out by deputies, Mack said. She had pain in her legs and bruising but was otherwise unscathed, and taken to a hospital for evaluation, he said.

The Channelview High band was traveling on two charter buses, FOX10 has learned, and the bus that was not involved in the accident is heading back home to Texas carrying band members and chaperones. He said he did not know how many passengers were injured, but said they were "numerous".

Robyn Bradley Bryan, a spokeswoman for the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, said in an e-mail that there were "multiple injuries" in the early morning crash. He also said officials from the National Transportation Safety Board were on their way to the crash scene.

The bus charter company, First Class Tours of Houston, pledged to help local authorities investigating the crash in a statement that offered prayers for injured and their families.

The school children had been on a trip to Disney World in Florida.

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