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School Bus Crash Raises Concern With Parents

By Heather Mathis
By hmathis@wbbjtv.com

JACKSON Tenn.,- Parents of students in the Jackson-Madison School System are voicing concerns, after a bus crash Wednesday morning.

District leaders confirm the bus driver involved in the crash near the intersection of North Highland and Lambuth Avenues has been in three previous accidents while driving a bus.

Police say the bus hit another car, but no one was injured. District leaders said five students were on the bus.

"Hardly any damage done to the bus," said Ginger Carver, a spokesperson for the school system. "The previous accidents this driver has been involved in have been very minor."

Carver says the district will not release the drivers name pending an internal investigation.

"I would like to know if [my children's] bus driver is having accident after accident," concerned parent, Diannitta Jones expressed. "Is he or she going to continue to have accidents and still be able to drive our kids to school?"

According to Carver, the driver will not be allowed to drive a bus until the internal investigation is complete.

In March, driver Michelle Hamilton, 46, was involved in a crash that sent five students to the hospital. District leaders said she was involved in two previous minor wrecks. Officials said Hamilton has still not returned to work.

Carver said she is unaware of a maximum number of incidents a bus driver can have before getting fired, but each one affects how much the district pays for insurance.

"Just like an individual, we would have a deductible on when we have accidents," Carver said. "I'm not sure how that will affect us overall, but yes, it would cost the district some fiances.

The district could not confirm how long the bus driver has been working for Jackson Madison county. All bus drivers are required to attend quarterly training on bus safety.