13 injured after school bus wreck in Johnston County
Posted January 15, 2014
Clayton, N.C. — A tractor-trailer driver was critically injured Wednesday morning when, authorities say, he hit a Johnston County school bus that was carrying a dozen children to a local middle school.
Kenneth Greene II was listed in critical condition with life-threatening injuries Monday evening at WakeMed, following the crash near the intersection of Uzzle Industrial Drive and U.S. Highway 70 in Wilson Mills near Clayton.
Authorities say the bus, headed to Smithfield Middle School, had stopped just after 7 a.m. at Uzzle Drive to pick up children when the wreck happened.
Fog is believed to be a factor in the crash, and charges against Greene are pending, Wilson Mills police said.
"The fog was so thick, you couldn't really see anything," said Sylvia Venable, who lives near the bus stop.
Seven students and the driver of the bus were taken to local hospitals by emergency workers, and four other students were taken by parents following the wreck. None of their injuries were serious, and by Wednesday afternoon, they all had been treated and released from the hospital.
Some neighbors, including Venable, say they believe the bus stop is too close to the highway. She said she asked earlier in the school year for the school system to assign her child to another bus stop because of safety concerns.
"There's just too much that can happen out here on the highway to have your children, even your older ones, standing there waiting for the bus," Venable said.
Johnston County Schools spokeswoman Tracey Peedin Jones said the school system honors such requests.
"We do have students all over the county, so we do have bus stops on all of our streets and all of our roads, if they are state-maintained," she said. "If a parent does have a concern about a bus stop, then we do have a process for that."
Peedin Jones said the school system is reviewing safety at the stop of Wednesday morning's wreck.