Johnson City

Bus crash investigation continues

One student remains in hospital

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Tenn. - The number of Washington County, Tennessee students hospitalized following last week's school bus crash continues to drop; meanwhile, the investigation into what happened is ongoing.

Washington County, Tennessee Director of School Ron Dykes is anxiously awaiting the official report into last week's school bus crash. "We need all of the information from the experts once we have that we can deal with it from there," said Dykes.

Dykes says he first wants to know if the crash was caused by a mechanical issue and if it was they want to check the entire fleet. "If it was not mechanical," explains Dykes, "we will address those issues at a later date."

District Attorney General Tony Clark told News 5 his office is working closely with the Tennessee Highway Patrol on the investigation.

Clark says once the final report is complete his office will make the decision on whether or not to file charges.

The driver, Brenda Gray, was taken to the hospital following the crash. School officials say they hope to talk to her in more detail very soon.

While the investigation continues, the director of schools wants to reassure parents about bus safety.

He says this is the first major bus crash in at least 40 years, and the county has very few bus wrecks each year. "Without question, the vast majority of those are people running into us," says Dykes.

Dykes say county buses travel 3,000 miles each day; that's 600,000 miles a school year.

To help increase safety along those miles, Ron Dykes says he expects the school board to reconsider seat belts on school buses. They looked at it two years ago but decided the county could not afford it.

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