Victim identified in fatal Lowndes Co. school bus crash
LOWNDES CO., GA (WALB) - One student was killed after a semi carrying an oversized load of metal beams collided with a school bus on Interstate 75 in Lowndes County Monday afternoon.
Officials said that Rebecca Hall, 15, of Valdosta was taken to South Georgia Medical Center after the accident, where she later died from her injuries.
Michael Scarpaci, 58, from Illinois was driving the 2005 Freightliner tractor trailer when the metal beams and the trailer collided with the rear driver's side of the school bus.
Aline Thomas, 62, of Valdosta was driving the school bus and received a leg injury in the accident. She was taken by a private vehicle to SGMC for treatment.
Scarpaci was uninjured.
Georgia State Patrol said that thirteen students were transported by ambulance to SGMC for injuries caused by the crash. And an additional six children were also taken to SGMC by private vehicle for treatment.
The Lowndes County School System released the following statement after the accident:
The Lowndes County School System is deeply saddened that this evening one of our students died from injuries sustained in the collision. According to Superintendent Wes Taylor, 'We are grateful for the efforts of law enforcement, emergency department personnel, and EMS. We are thankful for their assistance to our students and driver. We are asking our community for prayers and support for everyone involved in the collision.'
There were 31 high school students on the bus Monday afternoon. One of the children was listed in critical condition, and a helicopter was called to the accident, but officials could not stabilize the child to fly so they were taken to SGMC by an ambulance.
The Georgia State Patrol said troopers responded to the crash on I-75, mile-marker 16, south bound in Lowndes County.
Lowndes County School bus 0908 was transferring Lowndes High students to Lowndes Middle School, when it was involved in the accident with a semi.
The Lowndes School System said that uninjured students were being taken to Lowndes Middle School, to be picked up by their parents.
The school system said that counselors, social workers and support staff will be available for students and faculty in the days ahead.
GSP said that cause of the wreck is still under investigation and charges will be pending until the investigation is complete.
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