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School bus in Houston falls off Interstate 610; 2 students die, others injured

By Tomas Monzon

HOUSTON, Sept. 15 (UPI) -- Two female students were killed and two male students seriously injured when a school bus fell off Interstate 610 South Loop at Telephone Road in Houston, Tx. Tuesday.

The bus was headed for Furr High School at 520 Mercury Drive with a total of four students on board. The two male students and the driver were taken to area hospitals. Their conditions remain unknown. It is also unclear whether the students attend Furr or REACH Charter High School, which is hosted by Furr.

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The accident took place at about 7 a.m. on the eastbound lane of the South Loop. The spur remains closed and no timeline for its reopening has been announced.

A Houston police spokesperson told KTRK that a Buick LaSabre was traveling on a lane to the left of the bus when its driver believed another vehicle was entering her lane. To avoid it, she swerved to the right and hit the driver's side of the bus. The bus driver attempted to correct the direction of the bus but ended up oversteering and causing the bus to flip over the guardrail and land on Telephone Road.

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Two of the students were transported to Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital in the Texas Medical Center. The driver was taken to Ben Taub Hospital.

Witnesses say that the bus flew off the overpass. Anthony Martin told KTRK that the bus jumped off the freeway at more than 50 miles an hour, sounding "like somebody just hit a brick wall."

The driver of the Buick has been detained but has not been charged.

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Houston Independent High School Superintendent Terry Grier expressed deep sadness on behalf of the HISD and asked for prayers from all those involved. The school district also said that 27 buses had been involved in accidents during the 2013-2014 school year resulting in only one "minor" injury to an adult.

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