Charter School bus that caused crashed had no insurance

School Bus Crash at Pinellas-Pasco County lines 01

By Kens5.com

A charter school bus carrying 13 students that caused a crash in south San Antonio December 1 had no insurance and lacked a valid inspection, according to police records compiled by the KENS 5 I-Team.

The bus’s steering wheel locked up as it traveled along Highway 16 around 7:30 a.m., causing it to collide into the front of a Hyundai Elantra attempting to merge onto Interstate 35, according to a San Antonio Police Department crash report.

The driver of the car, Eliza Yee, told the I-Team she and her mother were not seriously injured. Yee’s mother is in her 80’s.

However, mechanics told Yee last week the Elantra is totaled.

The crash report indicates the bus belongs to Higgs, Carter, King Gifted & Talented Academy, a charter school located in the 500 block of Fredericksburg Rd. The bus driver and the 13 students on board were also not seriously injured, according to the crash report.

The school’s superintendent, Claudette Yarbrough, has not responded to repeated requests from the I-Team to explain the rationale of allowing a bus with no insurance or valid inspection to be used to transport children to her campus.

Yee’s insurance agent called last week and said the bus has been without valid insurance since May 9. Photos taken by SAPD at the scene revealed the bus’s inspection sticker had expired.

The bus involved in the accident was parked in front of the school Tuesday, along with the rest of the school’s fleet. It now has a valid inspection sticker on the front window.

“The parents at that charter school, they don’t know they are entrusting a school, that they’re putting their kids’ lives in danger,” said Yee.

Yee said Yarbrough has attempted to shift blame for the incident and its fallout to a local insurance agent. That agent also did not respond to repeated requests from the I-Team for comment.

The Texas Department of Public Safety requires public, charter and private school busses to operate under the same set of state regulations.

The bus involved in the accident was lined up in front of the school Tuesday along with the rest of the school’s fleet. It now has a valid inspection sticker.

Higgs, Carter, KIng Gifted & Talented Charter Academy is one of 5 San Antonio charter schools slated to be closed by Texas officials.

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