KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Cellphone video captured the terrifying moments when a school bus with dozens of kids inside burst into flames on Tuesday. FOX 4 is still working to learn what sparked the fire that sent students from Pathway Academy screaming off of their bus on East 55th Street near Swope Parkway.
Hugs were shared and students breathed sighs of relief as they came to terms with a frightening ordeal. Cellphone video captured flames, and black smoke billowing from the bus.
Despite being afraid, Alexander Johnson relied on what he learned from practice drills at school, and kicked the emergency door open.
"It was kind of scary for my own self, and other kids younger than me. For me being the oldest, yeah, it was kind of scary," Alexander said.
His mother told FOX 4 by phone that she`s glad he`s okay.
Richard Fisher, Jr., a father of four, also rushed into action when he heard a sizzling sound, and saw the bus in flames.
"So I ran over to the bus and I began to grab kids, snatching them off the bus as quickly as I could get them off," he described.
But he tips his hat to the bus driver, who despite being shaken after the fire started right next to her, didn't leave until every child was off safely.
"I tried to drive up the hill and the bus caught on fire while I was sitting there," bus driver Tiletha said.
"My hat is off to the bus driver. The bus driver was the absolute last one to get off of the bus," Fisher said.
"They mean a lot to me. I treat them like my own kids. If anything happened to these kids I would be really sad and upset about it," the bus driver said.
FOX 4 is still waiting to hear from the bus company, but according to the Missouri Highway Patrol, seven buses from Pathway Academy were inspected a year ago and they all passed.