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Bus driver charged with vehicular homicide after deadly school bus crash in Chattanooga

(Chattanooga Fire Department)
(Chattanooga Fire Department)
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BREAKING UPDATE: Chattanooga police said a bus driver has been charged after a deadly school bus crash in Chattanooga.

The driver, Johnthony Walker, 24, is being charged with five counts of vehicular homicide, one for each of the children killed when a school bus crashed into a tree on Talley Road Monday afternoon.

WTVC reports Walker is also being charged with reckless endangerment and reckless driving.

Police also said in a news conference about 10:45 p.m. Monday that five students have been confirmed dead in the crash. Earlier, the DA had told multiple media outlets that six children had been killed in the crash.

Police said about two dozen students were also taken to area hospitals to be treated for injuries.

The National Transportation Safety Board is headed to Chattanooga Tuesday morning to investigate. There is a box on the bus that collects data and records video which will be used in the investigation.

Meanwhile, Hamilton County students will have class as normal on Tuesday. Additional resource officers and guidance counselors will be on hand to help grieving students.

This story will be updated.


The National Transportation Safety Board will be investigating a deadly school bus crash in Chattanooga.

Police say multiple children were killed after a school bus crashed into a tree along Talley Road Monday afternoon.

Fox 17's sister station, WTVC, said the DA's office confirmed 6 students have died in the crash; 5 students were found dead on the bus and another child died at the hospital. At least 23 students were transported to area hospitals.

The Woodmore Elementary bus was the only vehicle involved in the wreck. It was carrying 35 students, grades K-5.

Police said in a news conference that speed is being investigated as a possible contributing factor in this crash. The bus driver is cooperating with police and being questioned.

Tuesday was the last day of school before Thanksgiving break for Hamilton County students. They will have class as normal on Tuesday, with additional school resource officers on hand to help with grieving kids. A press conference is slated for 6 a.m.

Meanwhile. Blood Assurance says the community is in desperate need of blood donations to help the victims injured in the crash. There's no word of how serious these injuries are.

Rescue and recovery efforts took nearly two hours. Fire and EMS crews extricated multiple students who were trapped on the bus after it crashed.

The devastating wreck has gripped the Chattanooga community and the Volunteer State. Multiple agencies and officials have expressed their condolences on social media:

The National Transportation Safety Board will be heading out for Chattanooga on Tuesday to investigate the crash.

This story will be updated.


CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — An elementary school bus reportedly crashed into a home in Chattanooga Monday.

Police say 23 students have been transported to the hospital. The bus was carrying 35 children.

Crews are on the scene of a crash involving a school bus and a home. The initial call came in just before 3:30 p.m.

Hamilton County Emergency Services and Chattanooga Police are on the scene at 313 Talley Road.

A representative with Woodmore Elementary has confirmed that bus 366 was carrying students from the school and was involved in the crash.

A neighbor living on Talley Road near the crash tells NewsChannel 9 that the bus is laying on it's side and children are escaping from the roof hatch.

Neighbors say the woman that lives inside the house appeared to be okay and was outside the home speaking with 911.

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The wreck is the second school bus crash in the state in less than four days. On Friday, a bus carrying Chester High School students crashed on I-65, also injuring 23 students.

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