Three Schenectady High students injured when car, bus crash
Updated 10:30 p.m.
NISKAYUNA Three Schenectady High School students suffered minor injuries late Thursday afternoon when a car struck their school bus.
In all, 21 students were on board the bus, which had just left Schenectady High School to take the students home, according to authorities.
Of the three who suffered injuries, two were released to their parents at the scene, while the third was taken to Ellis Hospital, conscious and alert but reclining on a stretcher.
That girl suffered a cut to her head and a sprained ankle, according to her mother. She was treated and released.
The accident happened just before 4 p.m. at the corner of Grand Boulevard and Dean Street in neighboring Niskayuna, about six blocks from Schenectady High School. A car heading north on Dean Street struck the bus as it headed east on Grand Boulevard.
The force of the crash dislodged the rear axle of the bus and sent the bus scraping past a tree, denting its roof, according to authorities.
The driver of the car, identified by police as Eric Schleicher, 34, of Niskayuna, was ticketed on a charge of failure to yield the right of way. He was unhurt, fire officials said.
The driver of the bus was identified as Gerald McCarthy, 51, of Schenectady. He was also uninjured.
Schenectady school officials notified the parents of each student on the bus. A separate bus came to the scene to take the rest of the students home, district spokeswoman Karen Corona said.
Some of the students notified their parents themselves. One of those parents was Glenna Ryan, who said her daughter Alexandra was sitting in the rear of the bus when the car hit, breaking the back windows.
Ryan said it was hard to judge over the phone how bad the crash was.
“Oh my gosh,” she said of her reaction to the call. “I didn’t know because she sounded OK and then she started crying.”
Ryan then got a little emotional herself.
“I was hoping she was OK,” she said. “She’s OK. She has a bruised foot and a cut in the back of her head.”
Ryan said by phone later that the family was back home. Alexandra had been treated for the cut and what turned out to be a sprained ankle and then released.
Responding to the scene were Niskayuna police and Niskayuna Fire District 1. The crash site was about a block inside Niskayuna.
Fire Chief Dale Lingenfelter said after authorities accounted for all the students and tended to the injuries, the next task was keeping track of the uninjured students.
The uninjured students stood in a nearby driveway with their backpacks, waiting for the second bus to arrive. The injured students were treated in the next driveway over.
“It went very well. The students were very helpful,” Lingenfelter said.
The Grand Boulevard-Dean Street intersection was the scene of another accident in August. Grand Boulevard sweeps into Niskayuna in that area at an unusual angle, with a median separating the two directions of the boulevard, continuing at that angle for several blocks.