School bus hits teenager


A 16-year-old girl on her way to catch a bus to school suffered serious injuries Monday morning after she was struck by a school bus in front of Canyon View Junior High School in Orem.

The girl suffered a fractured skull and orbital socket and was in stable condition Monday afternoon. She was originally taken to Timpanogos Regional Hospital and then transferred to Utah Valley Regional Medical Center.

Her father indicated the family was hopeful she would recover, said Orem Police Lt. Doug Edwards.

"It was an accident in the true sense of the word," Edwards said. "It was just a case of not seeing her."

The 39-year-old bus driver dropped off passengers at the junior high around 7:30 a.m. and made a left turn onto 700 East from 950 North when the bus hit the girl, who was crossing the intersection either in the crosswalk or close to it, Edwards said. It was dark outside at the time of the accident, he said.

Initial indications suggest the accident was the bus driver's fault, and the accident was under investigation Monday, Edwards said. There was no evidence of drugs or alcohol; no citations were issued and no arrests were made, he said.

The driver was crying and was hysterical, Edwards said.

"That's got to be every person's nightmare, let alone a bus driver," Edwards said. "I'm sure that's just a bus driver's nightmare."

Alpine School District spokeswoman Jerri Mortensen said such accidents are "extremely rare."

The driver had been operating buses for a little more than two years and, to Mortensen's knowledge, had a clean record.

The school district will take appropriate action depending on the outcome of the investigation, she said.