Bus driver says she swerved to miss deer before crash that injured 15

PERRY COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - A bus crash injured 15 people, 14 students, in Perry County Monday morning.

Credit: Crystal Sizemore

The bus was on the way to vocational school around 8 a.m. when it crashed Highway 28 near Gays Creek, between Buckhorn and Chavies.

The driver of the bus, 61-year-old Pam Couch, said she swerved to avoid a deer when she lost control of the bus and ran over an embankment.

"The bus driver is a veteran bus driver. She is obviously shook up about what happened," said Perry County Schools Assistant Superintendent Johnny Wooton.

Of the 14 students injured, 12 were taken to the hospital by ambulance and two left with their parents. School officials say the injuries are not life threatening.

"I was trying to do the best I could to calm them down and calm myself down at the same time," said Ricky Jones, who helped get students off the bus. "It was an awful thing, man. I don't ever want to see anything like that. Just a terrible, it's terrible, terrible."

Crews managed to tow the bus away.

Superintendent Jonathan Jett spent some time in the emergency room with students and their families. His son is about the same age as the students, and he says it is hard to imagine the fear their parents must have felt.

"I can only look through, look at it from a parent standpoint and how upsetting that would be to get that call, and then how long the drive would seem before you get to the site and make sure your kids are okay," said Jett.

The crash is under investigation.

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