State Patrol: School bus that hit tree had no mechanical problems

GREEN BAY – A Green Bay school bus driver is off the road until the investigation into a crash is finished.

The bus crashed into a tree in the 1600 block of Aspen Ln. on the city’s west side late Monday morning. At the time, there were 18 students on the bus; one suffered minor injuries.

The Wisconsin State Patrol says its investigation found no mechanical issues with the bus.

But some people say they’re not surprised the crash happened where it did.

“A little deviation in that turn and you got yourself an accident,” said Dave Faris, who’s lived on the block for 20 years.

The speed limit on Aspen Ln. is 25 miles per hour. But Faris says he’s seen his fair share of cars whip around the tight corner near his home – and not just cars.

“The buses seem to smoke it pretty good around here.”

The passenger-side roofline and windows of the Lamers school bus took much of the brunt of the impact.

“Sounded like my wife fell,” recalled Faris. “So I quick ran up the stairs and as I did, the bus was just coming to a stop at that angle over there.”

The bus was carrying young Head Start students to Keller Elementary at the time.

“When it happened, the mothers came running down the street,” said Faris. “Thank God nothing bad happened.

The students were wearing seat belts.

“I think that we had a positive outcome and by that, I mean that there was nobody seriously injured,” said Cindi Lawler, the school bus operations manager with Lamers Bus Lines in Green Bay.

Lawler says the driver is off the road, until the investigation is finished. But the company says, before this incident, the driver had a clean driving record, with 24 years behind the wheel.

“She’s driven a long time. Lots of miles,” said Lawler. “She was very affected (by the crash). As any driver would – especially one who’s driven as long as she has (and) is someone that enjoys driving and enjoys the profession. It’s a very emotional reaction.”

Some viewers asked FOX 11 why the logos on the bus were covered up at the crash scene.

So FOX 11 asked both Lamers and the State Patrol about it. Both say its common practice for logos on a vehicle involved in a crash to be covered up, before it is towed away.

The State Patrol says its report will be forwarded on to the Green Bay Police Department, which is heading up the investigation. A department spokesperson says the crash is still under investigation.

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