THORNVILLE, Ohio – Video from inside a school bus shows students topping over each other after the driver of a Ford Mustang ran a red light and hit the bus on Dec. 19 in Thornville, Ohio.
The 74-year-old bus driver and eight students were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries after the accident, according to CNN.
The driver of the Mustang, 42-year-old Joseph Thornton, suffered serious injuries in the crash including a broken back and was also taken to the hospital, CNN reported.
Charges are expected to be filed against Thornton for the crash, according to WSYX, which also reported that Thornton is now paralyzed from the waist down.
WSYX reported that no evidence has shown drugs and alcohol to be a factor in the crash but “such evidence could still exist.”
None of the students on the bus were wearing seat belts, which are not required by the National Transportation Safety Board.
The NTSB cites school buses as the “safest vehicles on the road” but also recognizes seat belts could have lessened injuries in previous incidents where a bus was involved in a side-impact crash or high-speed rollover.
“As a result of our school bus crash investigations, we believe—and have recommended—that, when investing in new school buses, the purchased vehicles should provide children with the best protection available, which includes 3-point seat belts,” the NTSB website states.
Texas is one of only six states that require seat belts on school buses, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Texas specifically requires a three-point seat belt, however, the law is “subject to appropriation for the purchase of such buses and the legislatures have not provided the necessary funding to trigger these requirements,” according to the NCSL.
In 2017 the Texas Tribune wrote an article about seat belts on school buses and reported that seat belts cost nearly $10,000 per bus “a price tag that’s near-prohibitive for some districts, especially as the state’s transportation funding formula has stayed stagnant for decades.”