StarkeJournal.com

A service of the Bradford County Telegraph, Inc.

Semi hits school bus, driver of bus shaken up



A semi collided with a Bradford County school bus Tuesday morning. No students were on board the bus. The driver of the semi was unhurt and emergency workers transported the bus driver to Shands Starke for evaluation.

The driver of the semi, Henry A. Smith, 36, of Atlanta said that an hour before the crash, he had picked up 35,000 pounds of paper in Palatka. He was driving to Arkansas.

Smith said he was following the bus westbound on S.R. 100 when he realized the bus had slowed and he was about to hit it.

“Obviously I was distracted,” he said, but would not elaborate on how he was distracted.

Smith added that he tried to avoid the bus by veering to the left. At the same time, the bus driver, Tonya Stack, started a left turn from the highway onto Southwest 75th Ave. (Slab Road). The truck hit the bus with a glancing blow, forcing both vehicles, side-by-side into a wooded area south of S.R. 100.

Shortly after the crash Stack declined transport to a hospital and instead sat in her husband’s vehicle. Her husband said she was shaken up. However, she later agreed to be transported to Shands Starke for evaluation.

Richard Sapp of the school district said Stack was on her way to pick up students in the Sampson Lake area. The district sent a substitute bus to transport the children.

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