The driver involved in yesterday’s Botetourt County school bus accident is on administrative leave pending further investigation. School officials say Mary Elizabeth Esque of Eagle Rock has no prior citations or incidents in her five years on the job, but she is charged with reckless driving, and a parent along the route says she could see this coming. WFIR’s Evan Jones has the story.[audio:http://wfirnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/05-24-School-Bus-Folo-Wrap1_WEB.mp3|titles=05-24 School Bus Folo Wrap1_WEB]
Joannie Gozzo has two children who can ride on this bus. Gozzo says like most mornings, she chose instead to drive them to school herself, and on her way back up Zion Hill Road, she came across the accident not far from her home. Gozzo says all the students were out of the school busby then, consoling and caring for one another until the ambulances arrived.
There were 39 middle and high school students aboard, and 13 taken to hospitals. None of their injuries is believed to be serious.
The school bus driver is charged with reckless driving. Mary Esque tells police she was distracted by a student just as the bus topped a small hill and reached a curve.