Four children on bus at time of Wednesday accident


More details on the Wednesday-evening traffic accident involving a school bus, ambulance and SUV on U.S. 65 near U.S. 425 south of Pine Bluff were available Thursday.

Pine Bluff School District Deputy Superintendent Rudolph Howard said Thursday that five children were aboard the PBSD bus when it came to a stop to drop off one of the students at 5:20 p.m. Wednesday.

“One student had disembarked and the bus driver was waiting for the child as he made his way up to his house when the accident occurred,” Howard said. “As far as I know all of the students on the bus as well as the driver were OK. The driver did not come to work today, and I have not yet received a full report on the accident.”

Howard said that as far as he knew, the bus had deployed its flashing red warning lights to warn motorists to come to a stop until the lights were turned off.

Pine Bluff Police Department spokesman Lt. JoAnn Bates said the accident occurred when an ambulance failed to break and struck an SUV that was stopped behind the bus, which in turn caused the SUV to hit the rear of the bus.

EASI Ambulance Operations Manager John Badgley said that the ambulance involved was transferring a patient at the time of the accident.

“He was transporting a patient down to the Star City Nursing Home,” Badgley said. “Everyone who was in the ambulance is OK.”

When asked if it was known what caused the accident, Badgley said that it was under investigation.

Bates said Wednesday that the female driver of the SUV suffered non-life threatening injuries and was transported by ambulance to Jefferson Regional Medical Center.