Bus hits, injures central Illinois child

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TOVEY, Ill. (WAND) – Deputies say a school bus hit a child in the Christian County area.

The Christian County Sheriff’s Office says it happened at about 7:40 a.m. Monday, when a 6-year-old boy was scheduled to ride a South Ford School District bus for the first time. Deputies say he was late to board the bus and ran alongside it trying to get the driver’s attention. They say the bus then hit the boy when he tripped and fell.

Investigators say bus driver Michael Withrow, 59, told them he looked around and didn’t see anything after several students stepped onto the bus. The bus was facing south on Columbus Avenue and on the edge of that street’s intersection with Borah Avenue. Withrow said he felt a bump when he then turned east onto Borah.

Deputies say Withrow says the child was in the northeast part of the intersection after the collision. 

First responders took the child to St. John’s Hospital in Springfield. Deputies say he has non-life threatening injuries.

Law enforcement leaders say parents need to make their children aware of possible dangers when they board school buses.

“Children should always arrive early to the bus stop so they can board the bus with other children,” Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp said. “Children should also keep their distance away from the bus until they are actually entering the bus. Children should never walk in front, behind or along the side of the bus.”

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