Bus accident involving students comes on heels of safety week
‘Crazy weather’ believed to be cause
As schools across the province commemorate bus safety week this week and next, the Lester B. Pearson School Board confirmed three students from Westwood Sr. High School in Hudson were involved in a school bus accident last week in SaintPolycarpe.
The accident that took place on SaintPhilippe St. just before 7 a.m. on Jan. 30 involved a minibus that slid into a ditch as it was making its way to the senior campus.
The students and a bus driver were taken to hospital in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield where one student was treated for a sprained arm. Two other students and the bus driver were checked by medical staff, who reported no other injuries.
Parents of the three students were immediately notified by police, as well as by Westwood Sr. principal Sheila Honeyborne. In addition, a second school administrator immediately left for the hospital to check on the students and speak with their parents.
LBPSB chairperson Suanne Stein Day, who said Monday the injured student was back in school, said Sûreté du Québec police were called to the scene of the accident. And though the cause of the accident has not been determined, she feels last week’s mixed bag of weather conditions played a role.
“Given the crazy weather we had last week, I’m guessing the bus hit some black ice,” Stein Day said, adding the board has been given a detailed report of the accident.
Stein Day said though the transportation companies often advise the school board about road conditions, indicating if they feel it is unsafe to dispatch busses to transport students, it is ultimately up to the board to decide whether or not to cancel school because of poor weather conditions.
Bus companies are not financially penalized if schools are closed due to dangerous driving conditions, she added.
“If they’re recommendation is not to run based on road conditions there is no penalty,” she noted.