A Valdosta, Ga., high school student died Monday of injuries she sustained when a tractor trailer hauling metal beams collided with the back of her school bus on I-75.
Lowndes County, Ga., authorities say that Rebecca Hall, a 15-year-old Lowndes High School student, was taken to South Georgia Medical Center by ambulance in critical condition. The 10th-grade student later died of her injuries.
“Life Flight responded to the scene of the crash in an attempt to transport a critically injured child,” Georgia State Patrol Cpl. Chris Kelch told reporters. “The child was unable to be stabilized for flight and was then transported to South Georgia Medical Center by ambulance. The child was identified as 15-year-old Rebecca Hall of Valdosta. Ms. Hall succumbed to her injuries at South Georgia Medical Center.”
Thirteen of the 30 other students on the bus were taken by ambulance to the hospital for treatment and another six children were taken to the hospital by private vehicle. Aline Thomas, 62, of Valdosta, was driving the bus and received a leg injury in the accident. The few students who were uninjured were shuttled to a middle school where they were picked up by their parents.
Authorities say the school bus was traveling south on I-75 when a 2005 Freightliner tractor-trailer driven by Michael Scarpaci, 58, of Lockport, Ill., rammed into the rear left side of the bus. The tractor-trailer is registered to CR Transport of Joliet, Ill. It was hauling an over-sized load of metal beams.
Mr. Scarpaci, who was wearing a seatbelt, was uninjured in the crash.
The Georgia State Patrol said the crash remains under investigation and charges against Mr. Scarpaci are pending until the investigation is complete.