Bus driver in crash celebrated by CCSD for actions during the accident

LAS VEGAS - On Friday, new details emerged about *how the bus driver responded to the emergency.

It's unclear when the driver, whose family says she is doing fine, will be back at work, but the Clark County School District says the experienced driver and the students did exactly what they were trained to do.

"The first words out of this driver's mouth were 'my students, my children'," said Shannon Evans, Transportation Dir for CCSD.

CCSD leaders are celebrating the bus driver whose name is Dawn Rice.

"What you saw yesterday was a driver following procedure," Evans said.

The first step of the procedure is to call for help by radioing the emergency.

"It is my understanding that that driver first words out of her mouth were 'I need help, my kids need help,'" Evans said.

Students who practice evacuation drills at least twice a year also sprung into action.

"So he twisted it, and pushed it out really hard and he opened it and people were like, 'Oh let's go! It's open from the back,' and everyone got out," said Kristiana Norris-Student.

Rice wasn't the permanent driver assigned to the bus route in yesterday's crash, but according to Evans, Rice is what CCSD calls an "extra board.  She's essentially a bus driver who fills in where she's needed.

With more than 13 years under her belt and only one 'minor school bus accident,' Evans says Rice can handle any bus route.

"She's skilled; she's experience, she's knowledgeable," Evans said.

The bus driver, along with most of the injured students, were released from the hospital Thursday afternoon.

Rice is still recovering from bumps and bruises, CCSD said.
She will be helped with her transition back to work.

"I will be reaching out to that driver, finding out what that driver needs," Evans said.  "Our typical transitioning driver back and behind the wheel of a bus is when they're ready to come back."


 


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