Staff, students, and fellow bus drivers in Grimshaw are taking advantage of counselling services offered after a collision took the life of a school bus driver on Highway 35 Monday morning.
Peace River School Division Superintendent Paul Bennett says they’re still in shock from the accident, which also injured 14 students and the driver of a semi.
“Everybody’s hurting; everybody is shocked with this turn of events. It’s not how you expect that your Monday morning will start off. We have to continue to rally together, and to support one another as we deal with this very difficult thing.”
More than a dozen bus drivers turned out to a support session Tuesday morning at Grimshaw High School for help dealing with the loss of a colleague.
Staff and teachers at Holy Family School are also on the look out for any changes in student behaviour, so they can direct them to a counselor on hand.
While the injured students weren’t at school Tuesday, they are reportedly all recovering well from cuts and broken bones.
Both the semi driver and a Holy Family student were airlifted to Edmonton, but Holy Family Catholic Division Superintendent Betty Turpin says she’s heard the child is doing well and is stable.
An investigation into what caused the crash is still underway, but Turpin says neither school division is looking for anyone to blame.
“It was an accident, and that’s what we have to believe in. I could walk out my door today and have an accident, and we are saying to our students, ‘Tomorrow you could be walking to school, you could be driving your bike, you could be in a vehicle with your parents; accidents happen and that’s a fact of life that we can’t control.”
The bus driver who passed away was a 60 year old Grimshaw resident, with several years experience.
Photo by Mile Zero News