CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — Bloodied students lay on stretchers, while other children walked away dazed with their parents after an elementary school bus crash that killed six Monday in Chattanooga.
Chattanooga police Chief Fred Fletcher said the crash was "every public safety professional's worst nightmare."
The bus was carrying 35 children from Woodmore Elementary, students in kindergarten through fifth grade, when it crashed about 3:30 p.m., turned on its side and wrapped around a tree.
Fletcher told reporters later that investigators were looking at speed "very, very strongly" as a factor. The bus was the only vehicle involved but the crash scene covers a significant area, he said.
Fletcher said later at news conference near where the crash occurred that the 24-year-old school bus driver, Johnthony Walker had been arrested and charged with five counts of vehicular homicide, reckless endangerment and reckless driving.
"There may be more charges added as this proceeds to the grand jury here in Hamilton County," Fletcher said.
The National Transportation Safety Board tweeted that a team would be heading to Chattanooga on Tuesday morning to investigate.
Twenty-three students were taken to hospitals, Fletcher said, but he did not have information about the extent of their injuries. Media reported it took about two hours to get the last children off the bus.
Television stations reported that people lined up to donate blood and some donors were asked to make appointments for Tuesday.
Kirk Kelly, interim superintendent for Hamilton County schools, said classes would be held on Tuesday, with counselors available for students and staff.
Hamilton County District Attorney Neal Pinkston told media outlets that five people died at the scene and one died at the hospital. Melydia Clewell, the district attorney's spokeswoman, confirmed the number.
Chattanooga police Assistant Chief Tracy Arnold said officials would not identify the students who died, or their ages, until parents were notified.
"Our hearts go out, as well as the hearts of all these people behind me, to the families, the neighborhood, the school, for all the people involved in this, we assure you we are doing everything we can," Fletcher said.
At the state Capitol in Nashville, Gov. Bill Haslam called the crash "a tragic event" and offered assistance.
"We're going to do everything we can to assist in any way," Haslam said. "It's a sad situation anytime there's a school bus with children involved, which there is in this case."
The intense heat was certainly felt across San Diego County Monday, and temperatures are expected to soar even higher on Tuesday. It's expected to be so hot, that schools in the San Diego Unified School District will once again run on a minimum day schedule.
The San Diego LGBT Community Center announced Monday its largest-ever matching gift -- a pledge that could result in $2 million in donations to the facility in Hillcrest.
The Salk Institute for Biological Studies of La Jolla was Monday awarded a $25 million, five-year grant by the National Institutes of Health in conjunction with its brain-mapping initiative.
After our 6:30 p.m. newscast Sunday night, we got reports from viewers that there was a mysterious animal in the background of a live shot in Hollenbeck Canyon.
A Chula Vista woman who survived breast cancer continues to fight for others diagnosed with the disease.
A two-year contract ratified by members of San Diego's police union would move officers' pay to above-average levels statewide in all classifications, city leaders announced Monday.
A small brush fire erupted alongside state Route 94 in Golden Hill Monday, burning brush near a church and preschool but causing no reported structural damage or injuries before crews got it under control.
Santa Ana winds will blow through much of San Diego County Monday and combine with record-high temperatures and extremely dry air to create dangerous fire conditions, forecasters said.
State Veterans Affairs Secretary Dr. Vito Imbasciani met with members of the Rincon Band of Luiseno Indians on Monday.