Bus goes into Metairie canal

Wynton Yates talks about an accident involving a school bus that went into a Metairie canal.

METAIRIE -- A school bus leaving T. H. Harris Middle School ended up in a West Metairie canal Tuesday afternoon after the bus driver reportedly lost control of the vehicle.

There were reports of two minor injuries to children, some of whom apparently scrambled out of windows to get out. Emergency personnel got to the scene quickly and helped to evacuate the children.

The incident occurred around 1:45 p.m. near the intersection of Elise and West Metairie.

The bus, with 34 children on board, was making a U-turn in the area when it went into the canal. Photos from the scene showed the bus precipitously close to turning over with one wheel in the water and the rest of the bus on the incline of the canal. 

Jefferson Parish Public School System spokeswoman Elizabeth Branley said the students were on their way to a track meet at East Jefferson High School. She said the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office has spoken with the bus driver to try to discern what caused the accident.

"When the driver was making a U-turn, somebody had put an ice chest right by her," said a student on the bus. "So when she turned, it slid and hit her leg and she couldn't get it off her leg and it distracted her, and she drove into the canal."

Officials said the driver, a 38-year-old woman from New Orleans, was cited for careless operation of a motor vehicle. 

(© 2016 WWL)


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