ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – New video released by the Albuquerque Police Department shows the chaotic and terrifying moment when a car crashed into a school bus in February, causing it to roll over onto its side and sending children flying into the air.
In slow motion, the video shows the moment the car hit the center of the bus, which was packed with middle school students from George I. Sanchez Community Collaborative School.
The students can be seen talking and laughing one minute, then piled on top of each other the next, unable to get up. The impact was so great that kids were thrown from one side of the bus to the other.
It then shows the bus driver and kids on board trying to get free, but they are rattled and confused. Some suffered serious injuries. One girl had a broken pelvis. Another boy, who seconds earlier was walking down the aisle, was thrown so hard he was unable to get up.
The bus driver crawls over the seats to help the kids who are trying desperately to get out. Some of the kids immediately call their parents while others crawl out of the window. The rest crawl out of the emergency door.
It wasn’t long before bystanders arrived to help. The video shows the victims on board slowly making their way off the bus with help from people who saw the crash. One injured boy remained stuck aboard the bus until people came to his aid and got him out.
According to a spokesperson for Albuquerque Public Schools, there were 23 students on board at the time of the crash. Seven students on board and the bus driver were sent to the hospital for injuries. According to the criminal complaint, a 14-year-old suffered a pelvic fracture and a 13-year-old suffered a femur fracture – both injuries requiring surgery.
The driver of the car that hit the bus was Mario Perez. He is facing two counts of great bodily harm by vehicle. The District Attorney’s Office says those charges were filed by the officer. More charges related to the other kids could be added once it makes its way through their office to District Court.