LOW PASS, Ore. (KMTR) -- Parents in the Triangle Lake district are praising a quick-acting bus driver after a log truck almost slammed into the back of a school bus full of children. It was all caught on camera.
The close call happened Tuesday afternoon on Highway 36 in Low Pass, just east of Triangle Lake. A Triangle Lake school bus full of students from Kindergarten through Grade 12 had stopped on the narrow two lane highway to unload at its usual stop in front of Low Pass Market.
The bus had just let about ten children off on the side of the road and was waiting for them to cross. That’s when the bus driver, Pam Alley, noticed a log truck coming down the highway that didn’t appear to be slowing down.
Parents who were waiting for their kids on the side of the road also saw the log truck.
“All I could think is, 'he's not slowing down',” said Lisanne Dickinson, a parent who was waiting for her son when the near-crash happened.
Parents and the bus driver then waved at the children to cross the road faster. Lisanne Dickinson’s son Jesse was one of them.
“I said, 'oh shoot, we better run, run, run!'” said Jesse.
Once the kids cleared the road, the bus driver hit the gas and swerved to the left as the log truck sounded on its horn and veered off the road to the right. The truck missed the school bus by just inches. Several other children were still on the bus when it swerved out of the way.
“It was inches away from the bus - the truck was - and I could even see how hard the truck driver had slammed on his brakes,” said Josie Amezcua, a student on the bus during the near-crash.
Parents say the bus driver was heroic.
"If she [the bus driver] hadn't have moved as quick as she did and done what she had done . . . it could have been disastrous. We could have lost every one of our kids,” said Lisanne.
No one was hurt, but parents say their children could have been seriously injured or killed, had it not been for the alert bus driver.
“She is such an experienced and great driver and she acted so quickly and her actions directly saved the lives of our kids. She was on it, she was paying attention. She knew what was coming, she knew exactly what to do and I can't say enough about Pam. She is awesome,” says Lisanne.
Parents confronted the driver after the near crash. The driver claims that his brakes didn’t work. He was able to drive away from the scene though.
Triangle Lake’s school principal has since submitted a incident report to Oregon State Police (OSP) about what happened. OSP told the school that it will get a copy of the surveillance tape and review any possible charges against the driver.