SEMINOLE COUNTY — Authorities have confirmed two deaths in a head-on collision involving a Konawa school bus.
This is a developing story. The Ada News will provide updates as they become available. Here is what we know.
The collision occurred around 7:30 p.m. Friday on U.S. 377 in Seminole County, near Bowlegs.
Seminole County Sheriff Shannon Smith said a Konawa Junior High School student was one of two confirmed deaths in the crash, the other, an adult in the second vehicle, which Smith described as an SUV. Smith said he believes there may be a third adult fatality from the SUV, but the remaining students who were on the bus were “responsive” and have all been transported to area hospitals, some with serious injuries.
Smith was reluctant to characterize or classify the degree of injuries students on the bus may have suffered, but he said he was hopeful.
“We’ve got some serious injuries,” Smith said. “For some stupid reason we don’t have seatbelts in school busses. I don’t know that it would have saved these kids, but I’m a firm believer in seat belts. Why we don’t protect our children is beyond me.”
Grief-stricken and in tears, Konawa Public Schools Athletic Director Karis Reavis said Friday by phone he was at the hospital with families involved in the crash.
“This is a terrible, terrible tragedy and, hopefully, people will be in prayer for us,” Reavis said.
U.S. 377 at EW1300 remains closed in both directions as Oklahoma Highway Patrol officials continue to investigate the cause of the collision.