Charter bus with students plunges into ravine in Alabama
Raw video: emergency workers respond to accidents after the charter bus with Texas students from Channelview high School, allegedly back from Disney World crashed into a ravine in Alabama.
A bus driver was killed and a number of other people were seriously injured Tuesday when a charter bus filled with high school students immersed in a 50-meter ravine in Alabama — trapping dozens inside the mangled vehicle until rescuers were able to rappel down to free them.
The bus was on the way to Houston, Texas, after a study trip around 5:30 a.m. when it crashed into a highway median on Interstate 10 and is immersed in Cowpen Creek in Baldwin County, Sheriff Huey Hoss Mack said at a press conference.
#TrafficAlert: Officials say 45 students from Houston on the bus to FL for Spring Break -> 12 reported to be in critical condition. @FOX10News pic.twitter.com/7909Nf9LfD
— Sarah Wall (@SarahWallFox10) March 13, 2018
The driver was pronounced dead at the scene. The bus with about 45 people at the moment, with five of those of the adults.
“We have multiple injuries; the bus went down into a ravine,” said Chris Elliott, a Baldwin County commissioner who helped us at the county’s emergency management center after the crash. “The fire department and the officers have to the descent in the area.”
More than a dozen fire departments from Alabama and Florida responded to the scene and worked to remove the trapped passengers — Channelview High School band students who were in Disney World in Florida and in the ravine. Several officers entered the ravine to pull students from the wreckage, according to Mack. At least six helicopters were also used in the relief efforts. Several people also had to “cut-out” of the wreck.
The passengers were taken to 10 local hospitals. A person is in critical condition and five others were seriously injured. Others have slight injuries, although the exact number of wounded was not immediately clear.
The charter bus on the way to Texas fell into a ravine early Tuesday morning.
The high school band posted a picture on his Facebook page, with several members wearing Mickey Mouse ears outside of Disney World, a few hours before the crash.
It is unclear what caused the bus to fall into the ravine. Another bus that was traveling with the vehicle was not involved in the crash, and continued the journey to Texas.
First Class Travel, the bus company, said in a statement it was the pledge of the “assistance in the cooperation with the local authorities in the investigation,” according to WKRG.
Interstate 10 was closed in both directions after the incident. The police said the interstate will be closed for at least another two hours to remove the bus and investigate the incident.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Katherine Lam is a breaking and trending news digital producer for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter via @bykatherinelam