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Two hurt in Molalla school bus crash

by: PHOTO COURTESY OF MOLALLA POLICE SGT. CHRIS LONG - The driver of this car was taken to a Portland hospital by Life Flight for treatment of serious injuries after the vehicle collided with a school bus near Molalla Thursday morning, March 7.A Life Flight helicopter took an injured driver to the hospital after a school bus T-boned the driver’s vehicle early Thursday morning.

Oregon State Police are investigating the crash, which occurred about 6:28 a.m., March 7, at the intersection of Highway 211 and South Vaughn Road.

No children were aboard the bus at the time of the crash, state troopers said.

The driver of the vehicle was injured and transported by Life Flight to a Portland hospital. The driver of the bus was taken to a local health care facility, transported by car.

State police said that at about 6:30 a.m., a 2001 Volkswagen Passat driven by 19-year-old Alexandra Vanderpool of Oregon City was westbound on Highway 211 west of Vaughan Road when it slid on black ice and skidded into the opposite lane. The Passat collided with a First Students school bus driven by 47-year-old Lori Koos of Molalla. The school bus had just started it's route and there were no children on it at the time of the collision.

Molalla police Sgt. Chris Long, who was at the scene, said weather conditions contributed to the accident. “The road was icy and the car slid in front of the bus,” Long said.

When paramedics from the Molalla Fire District arrived at the scene they requested the Life Flight because of Vanderpool's injuries which were serious but not life-threatening, according to police.

Oregon Department of Transportation reported that Highway 211 was closed in both directions two miles east of Molalla.

This is the fourth school bus accident in the Molalla River School District in recent months. Superintendent Tony Mann said he has been looking into the accident.

“I been in contact with the local First Student supervisor and corporate offices and gave our concern about school bus safety,” Mann said. “The first purpose of my contact with first student supervisor was regarding the incident, and I have continued to communicate with her and the corporate office to learn as much as I can about the facts surrounding this mornings accident. At this time, with the absence of police reports, I can’t confirm any facts other than there were no children on the bus.”