BIG SPRING, Texas (Nexstar)- UPDATE: According to DPS spokesman Justin Baker, the driver of a Ford F-350 that collided with an Andrews ISD bus has died. Additionally, two adults aboard the lead Andrews ISD bus have died, investigators said in a news conference Friday evening. One aboard the bus died on the scene, the other was airlifted to a Lubbock hospital and died after arriving.
11 students and one other adult aboard the school bus have been taken to Scenic Mountain Medical Center in Big Spring where they are being treated for non-life threatening injuries.
“Being a parent myself…this is one of those moments you never want to think of, you never want to get that phone call. And our hearts go out to the community,” Baker said.
The names of those injured have not been released. The investigation into the crash is on-going.
State Representative Brooks Landgraf has provided more details into the fiery crash that left at least two people dead. Landgraf said he was told by DPS that a wrong way driver hit an Andrews ISD bus head-on, the driver of that vehicle is believed to have died in the crash.
Landgraf said no students were killed in the crash, but some were taken to the hospital with injuries. At least one other adult was killed in the crash.
“Please join (wife) Shelby and me in praying for everyone involved, everyone waiting for information, and everyone grieving. The wonderful community of Andrews can use every bit of support we can give right now. Lastly, thank you to the hard-working women and men of the Texas Department of Public Safety and other first responders for working so diligently on the scene and helping to save lives,” Landgraf said in a Facebook post.
Senator Ted Cruz echoed Landgraf in a statement which said, “Heidi (wife) and I are praying for the Andrews ISD community, especially for those involved in the horrendous school bus crash near Big Spring. May they find comfort during these tragic times.”
Governor Abbott said of the crash, “Our hearts go out to those who were injured or lost their lives in the bus crash in Big Spring, and we grieve for the families of those taken too soon. The Texas Department of Public Safety is working closely with local officials to investigate this accident, and the State of Texas is ready to provide any additional resources and support needed to Andrews ISD, Big Spring, and those affected by this tragedy. I thank the first responders who rushed to the scene to help those involved in the crash, and I ask Texans to join me and Cecilia in prayer for those involved in this horrific accident.”
A spokesperson with University Medical Center in Lubbock has confirmed at least three victims from Friday’s crash have been transported to their hospital for care.
At least one of those patients is in critical condition. The condition of the other two is unknown, but the hospital says those patients are stable.
The families of those taken to Lubbock have also arrived at the hospital.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, two people have died in a head-on crash on I-20. The condition of those aboard the bus is unknown.
The Texas Department of Public Safety has confirmed a school bus has crashed in the eastbound lanes of I-20 near mile marker 179.
According to a photo on Facebook, the school bus belongs to Andrews ISD and comments made on the post say the bus was carrying members of the band to a playoff football game in Sweetwater. An Andrews ISD has also confirmed the bus was carrying members of their marching band.
Andrews ISD says, “Administrators are working to serve the needs of our students and their families.”
DPS did not say if anyone was hurt in the crash, but a vehicle involved appeared to be on fire based on a Facebook photo.
Big Spring Mayor Shannon Thomason said from information he has received, at least one school bus was hit during the crash. Thomason says the Big Spring Fire Department has responded to the crash and multiple ambulances are on the scene as well.
“Just asking folks to pray for all those who are involved,” Thomason said.
We have a reporter headed to the scene and will update as more information becomes available.