At least one dead as bus carrying students plunges into Alabama ravine

At least one dead as bus carrying students plunges into Alabama ravine

A family member tells KHOU 11 the high schoolers were from Channelview and on their way back home to Texas after a trip to Disney, but Channelview ISD has not yet confirmed this information.

Baldwin County Sheriff Huey Hoss Mack says the bus entered the median on Interstate 10 and then fell into the 50-foot ravine Tuesday at about 5:30 a.m. The students were on a trip from Houston, Texas.

The bus was carrying at least 52 people, WEAR-TV reports.

The interstate was closed down in both directions as the injured were flown to hospitals including emergency rooms in Mobile and Pensacola, Florida, plus a free-standing emergency room in rural Baldwin County, said Chris Elliott, a Baldwin County commissioner.

An Alabama state trooper confirmed the person killed was the bus driver.

Chief Deputy Anthony Lowery with the Baldwin County Sheriff's Office. At least one is in critical condition and five have serious injuries, officials said.

At least 37 people, majority teenagers, were treated at hospitals or other facilities in Pensacola and southwest Alabama for injuries that ranged from minor to very serious, medical officials said.

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Around 20 patients went to Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola, FL, while others were taken to hospitals in Baldwin County, including USA Medical Center in Mobile.

He said: "There's at least one confirmed fatality at this point".

An image of the wreckage shows the crumpled bus landed on its side below the highway. They were going home to Channelview, Texas, a community about 15 miles from Houston. He said he did not know how many passengers were injured, but said they were "numerous".

The cause of the accident is now under investigation by the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.

Mark Kramer, a spokesman for Channelview Independent School District in unincorporated Harris County, Texas, said, "A charter bus transporting Channelview High School band students was involved in an accident on Interstate 10 in Alabama early this morning".

One image posted on the band's Facebook page hours before the crash showed a large group posing outside Disney World.

An official with the bus charter company, First Class Tours of Houston, said the company was working on a statement.

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