Early on the morning of Wednesday, August 27, 2014 a school bus en route to East Duplin High School in the eastern part of North Carolina collided with an 18-wheeler logging truck, leaving three people—the two students who were on board at the time of the crash and the woman who was driving the bus—injured. One of the students and the bus driver are currently recovering from their injuries in Vidant Duplin Hospital, and their injuries are reported to have been relatively minor and non-life threatening. The driver of the logging truck did not sustain any injuries in the collision.
The logging truck was allegedly attempting to pass the school bus on the left while the school bus was simultaneously attempting to make a left turn, causing both vehicles to veer off the roadway and into a small ravine. The driver of the bus, Susan Chesnutt, who is said to have had nearly 18 years of bus-driving experience under her belt at the time of the crash, has been charged with a moving violation in the wake of the accident. The collision took place in Jones County, in an area of State Highway 41 West just across from the Duplin County Line, and state troopers have been called in to investigate the accident. Their preliminary findings indicate that the fault for the accident lay with the bus driver, Susan Chesnutt.
The school district is conducting its own investigation, and in the meantime another driver has taken over Chesnutt’s usual route while the investigation is being performed. School officials have stated that the bus was given the go-ahead to take its route over county lines before turning around and heading back into Duplin County to East Duplin High in order to complete its circuit. District officials have said that this route was determined to be the safest way to get local students from their pickup locations to their destination when the bus routes and schedules were being planned before the beginning of the school year. They have also said that they have taken measures to ensure that their drivers are properly trained in safety protocol. There has been no word yet as to what, if any, disciplinary action the district will take against Chesnutt.
There is no word at this time as to whether charges will be filed by anyone involved in the crash.