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Bus driver killed, 22 hurt

June 11, 2002|By MARIO RENTERÍA
  • Law enforcement officers assess damages at the scene of a collision between a school bus transporting Winterhaven students and a tractor-trailer rig Monday near Winterhaven. The bus driver was killed. CUAUHTEMOC BELTRAN PHOTO
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Staff Writer

WINTERHAVEN — A San Pascual Valley Unified School District bus driver died of head injuries after the bus he was driving collided with a tractor-trailer rig here Monday afternoon.

The bus driver was James Headington. His exact age was not known but he was believed to be in his 50s and a Yuma resident.

Paramedics took 22 San Pascual district elementary students to the Yuma Regional Medical Center for everything from minor injuries to precautionary check-ups.

A total 26 students on the bus who were not injured were taken back to the school in another bus after the accident, said Michele Cohen, spokeswoman from the YRMC.

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None of the 22 students taken to the hospital was admitted for overnight care. All of the injuries were minor and the students were treated and released.

The big rig driver, Leon Reed, 62, of Winterhaven reported no injuries but was taken to YRMC to be checked.

The accident happened about 2:40 p.m. at the intersection of Picacho and Arnold roads.

The bus was traveling west on Arnold while Reed was heading south on Picacho, said California Highway Patrol Public Information Officer David Nuñez of the Winterhaven station.

The bus was taking students home after school.

He said the bus driver stopped at a posted stop sign and then made a left turn on to Picacho. Reed did not have a stop sign in his path and continued south on Picacho.

The front right side of the bus collided with the left front side of the big rig and caused the bus driver to be ejected through the bus door, which was ripped off by the big rig.

Headington was taken to YRMC in critical condition and was later pronounced dead.

>> Staff Writer Mario Rentería can be reached at 337-3441.

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