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A local school bus driver was hailed for her actions to protect her passengers when her school bus caught fire this past Wednesday morning. District Five Schools of Spartanburg County, SC, said that the incident occurred just after 7:00 am, as a bus operated by the district was transporting students to three schools. There were 56 elementary, intermediate, and high school students on board.
According to District Five, two ninth grade students noticed smoke and alerted the school bus driver, Teresa Stroble, who then evacuated all of the passengers in less than one minute. The Duncan Fire Department responded to the scene and put out the fire.
District officials praised Stroble, who also serves as a teacher assistant and has worked for District Five for seven years. “[She] did exactly as she was trained and quickly and calmly evacuated all 56 students from the bus and got them to a safe location,” District Five was quoted as saying. “She is a true hero!”
Like all other school buses in South Carolina, the bus that caught fire is owned by the state. It was a 1995 Thomas Built rear-engine model. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
South Carolina has been working to update its school fleet. In February, the state Department of Education acquired 26 new propane school buses to replace older diesel models.