VIDEO: Kids Save Bus When Driver Falls Unconscious
MILTON, Wash. — A 13-year-old boy is being hailed a hero after he successfully stopped his school bus after the driver lost consciousness. Surveillance video shows Jeremy Wuitschick’s swift reaction when he realized something was wrong.
Before the driver passed out, surveillance videos shows he began coughing and shifting in his seat. His eyes roll back into his head and he slumps backward. The bus hit a curb and inside, students were being jostled around. Wuitschick said the bus was headed straight for a church.
“So I take action,” he said. “I leap off my chair, I grab the wheel, turn it right. Get it to the right side of the road. I take the keys out of the ignition and the engine starts shutting off, slowing down.”
Another student, Johnny Wood, trained in CPR by the Red Cross also ran up to the front of the bus to help.
“I ran up and tried doing chest compressions, but his eyes were rolling back and I could tell it was getting harder for him to breathe,” Wood said.
Other students on the bus called 911 and a teacher from the school hopped on board to help. Both Wuitschick and Wood said it was scary and exhilarating.
“I’m just thinking, I just want to stop the truck because I don’t want to crash, and I don’t want to know what it feels like, so, yeah…I just don’t want to die,” Wuitschick said.
Wood said his adrenaline was pumping.
“Because, I mean, you want to know if he’s okay, but then again it’s happening so fast your heart’s pumping,” he said. “It’s breathtaking and breath-giving.”
The school district’s superintendent, Jeff Short, said students who ride the bus are trained in emergency situations. Milton Police Chief Bill Rhodes said the boys acted appropriately.
The bus driver was a substitute driver, and his image has been blurred to preserve his privacy. It’s unclear at this time what caused him to lose consciousness.