A SCHOOL bus carrying special needs pupils from the Aegir Community Special School in Gainsborough over turned, seriously injuring its driver.
The silver LDV mini bus left the road and crashed through a hedge on Top Road near Osgodby, on its way to Market Rasen at around 3.20pm on Monday 20th February.
Miraculously, none of the seven pupils on board were badly hurt, escaping with just cuts and bruises.
But the driver, a 55-year-old Middle Rasen man, had to be cut free from the vehicle.
The children’s carer, a 58-year-old Market Rasen woman, broke her collar bone and was taken to Lincoln County Hospital. She was later discharged.
A spokesman for Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance (DLRAA) said the driver was trapped for around an hour while fire crews worked to release him.
Once free, he was put into an induced coma, fitted with a neck collar to protect his spine, and flown to Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham where he remains in a stable condition.
Lincolnshire Police confirmed a small number of school children had been travelling as passengers.
“They were obviously shaken and were checked over by ambulance staff but none of them were injured,” said a police spokesman.
Karen Gittins, headteacher at the Aegir School, said: “Thankfully, none of the seven students suffered serious injuries, just minor cuts and bruises and all were correctly wearing seatbelts.”
“We will support all the students involved as they return to school - one of the students intends to return to school tomorrow and we hope to see the others by the end of the week.”
“The driver of the minibus was taken to hospital with his assistant and we hope they recover quickly.”
Tony Blanchard owns Market Rasen taxi firm Blanchards Taxis, which takes the 11 to 16-year-olds to and from school in Gainsborough everyday.
He said: “Nothing like this has happened in the 30 years I’ve had the business. I was horrified when I found out about it, I was on the scene in 20 minutes.”
“The emergency services were there and the children were all checked out. Some were shocked, some had cuts and bruises but they were fine. It’s amazing when you consider the injuries the adults suffered.”
“I’ve known the driver for 20 years and he’s worked for me for the last two years. They had to cut up the bus to get him out.”
“I haven’t spoken to him since the crash but his wife told me he’s broken a vertebrae in his back and the doctors don’t know how serious his injuries are yet.
“I think he must have caught the side of the road and it’s taken them down into the field, you could barely see the bus from the road.”
Lincolnshire County Council’s transport manager, Jean Harris, said the circumstances of the accident would be investigated.
Police want to hear from anyone who saw the silver LDV minibus at about 3.20pm on Top Road, Osgodby. Call 101 quoting incident number 240 of 20th February 2012.