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Students, driver injuried in bus accident Thursday

JONESBORO — A driver was seriously injured during an early morning crash involving a loaded Clayton County school bus on Tara Boulevard on Thursday.

Officials reported the accident involved the bus and a white Saturn sedan.

A handful of students and the bus driver also suffered minor injuries, said school spokeswoman Vicki Gavalas.

Gavalas said the bus was transporting 13 magnet program students to Rex Mill Middle School. She said one student was taken by ambulance to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston, while others complaining about minor injuries were transported by their parents to other area hospitals.

She said the driver of the sedan was seriously injured and airlifted to Piedmont Henry Hospital. Both the bus and sedan were towed from the scene, between the intersections of Flicker Road and Cardinal Road.

Clayton County police Sgt. Kevin Hughes, the department’s public information officer on duty, said the accident started when the driver of the Saturn tried to avoid another car.

Hughes said two cars were headed southbound, when one attempted to change lanes. The driver of the second car, the white Saturn, swerved left to avoid hitting the car and over-steered, crossing the grassy median and colliding with the northbound bus.

Gavalas said police commended bus driver Joyce Miller on her quick response at the scene to get her student passengers to safety.

Miller was transported to and evaluated at Southern Regional Hospital, said Gavalas, adding an investigation into the cause of the accident is ongoing.

“We have social workers that are meeting with the students and their families,” she said.