JASPER COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - DPS has reported a school bus crash in Jasper County involving 30 track athletes.
DPS spokeswoman Stephanie Davis said the Woodville ISD bus was traveling eastbound on FM 1013 near Kirbyville when it traveled off the road and into a ditch. The bus rolled over several times before coming to rest in an open field.
A scene many only see in theaters.
"Oh, kids lying on the ground. There are kids on the bus still. There's lacerations back and body," said Brent Scoggins of the Tri-Community Volunteer Fire Department.
Scoggins and the rest of the Tri-Community Volunteer Fire Department received a call at 3:11 Thursday afternoon that would change them forever.
"We were just called out for a 1050 major, which is a major car accident. That's all we knew as we were coming," Scoggins said.
Crews arrived here along this stretch of FM 1013 in Kirbyville to find Woodville ISD bus number 15 carrying track team members to a meet in Kirbyville had lost control and flipped several times landing in this field.
"When I got here to the scene it was just like devastating. When you see all that and kids everywhere, said Vandie Smith, Chief of the Tri-Community Volunteer Fire Department.
We now know there were 33 passengers total on this bus. 30 students, 2 coaches and the driver. 25 of those were transported by ambulance and 2 others by helicopter to hospitals in Houston and Beaumont.
A scene , as parents, these first responders took on with bravery.
"You do your job at the moment because people need you. You're not thinking that stuff, I mean, because those kids need you. You've got to do what you've got to do and been trained to do at that moment, now later it might hit you," Scoggins said.
A preliminary crash investigation revealed the bus' two right tires left the road causing the driver to overcorrect and swerve.
"This is my first, this bad. I've seen some bad ones but not this bad," Smith said.
And through it all, of those injuries, none are believed to be life-threatening.
"It's just the grace of God that they were just injuries, no one was killed," Smith said.
The school bus was not equipped with seatbelts.
Tyler County Sheriff Bryan Weatherford said the bus was carrying a track team to a meet at Kirbyville ISD.