Montgomery County school bus catches fire with students on board - WSMV News 4

Montgomery County school bus catches fire with 20 students on board

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The school bus caught fire during its route Thursday morning. (Source: Clarksville-Montgomery County School System) The school bus caught fire during its route Thursday morning. (Source: Clarksville-Montgomery County School System)
CLARKSVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

A bus driver jumped into action to save children who were on a bus that caught fire Thursday morning.

Clarksville Montgomery County School System administrators said an electrical problem with a cable near the battery caused the bus to catch fire.

"We're really proud of the driver. She did a great job for us," said Jim Sumrell, the Chief Operations Officer of CMCSS.

Around 6:30 a.m. at a bus stop on Southside Road, lights blinked and the engine stopped while 20 middle and high school students sat on board.

Ninth grade student Bayleigh Crockett told News 4 the bus driver sprang into action.

"She told us to start lining up, and we got out the front of the bus," Crockett said.

Crockett saw the smoke coming from the bus. Once everyone was off the bus, Crockett captured video of bus on fire minutes later.

"She was making sure that everybody was walking over away from it," Crockett said.

School administrators told News 4 the 16-year-old bus passed inspection in July. A metal ring on the cable was loose and caused the wires to wear, Sumrell said. He said the buses received a detailed inspection every year by Tennessee Highway Patrol.

There are 31 buses of the same type in service, and mechanics went through each of them before the buses left for afternoon runs.

"I don't lack any confidence in our ability to operate these buses, and I have high confidence that if it happens again our drivers are properly trained to handle it," Sumrell said.

No one was hurt, and no students were on the bus when it caught fire. The bus will be replaced with a new one that will cost $80,000, which will come from the school budget and insurance.

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