PICKENS COUNTY, AL (WBRC) - State troopers say the driver of an SUV that crashed with a school bus in Pickens County, killing the bus driver, admitted to not paying attention and not stopping at a stop sign.
Longtime bus driver Sharon Hood died in the crash near Ethelsville on County Road 30 and County Road 35 on Friday, April 10. Fourteen students from Reform Elementary and Pickens County High School were on board and their injuries ranged from serious to minor.
A report just released by Trooper Reginal King with the Tuscaloosa Alabama Law Enforcement Agency post says the SUV driver didn't stop at a stop sign and hit the bus, which sent it off the road and into a tree. The report says the SUV was traveling north on County Road 35 and the bus was heading west on County Road 30. The SUV failed to yield to the bus from a stop sign and hit the bus in an “angular front end collision,” the report states.
The driver “stated he was not paying attention and did not see the stop sign,” the trooper report says.
Six of the bus passengers were taken to Pickens County Medical Center in a county bus, according to the report. The driver has not been charged with any crime in connection to the wreck. Pickens County District Attorney Chris McCool says he has yet to review the crash report. He said he could present the case to a grand jury in September and let them decide if the driver should face charges.
School officials said Hood was a 28-year veteran bus driver. Grief counselors were made available for Pickens County students following her death, and a sign outside the school read, "We love and miss you Mrs. Sharon."