Church bus crashes in Atlanta area; several injured

A church bus carrying dozens of high school students and adults from Alabama crashed near Atlanta on Thursday afternoon, killing one person and injuring several others, authorities said. In addition to one fatality, four to five were critically injured, while 10 were said to be "walking wounded". The victim's identity is being withheld pending family notification.

Fulton County police confirm one person has died. Smith did not clarify the extent of their injuries.

Images from the scene showed the white bus tilted over and debris on the road. Firetrucks and ambulances swarmed the area as traffic came to a standstill on the busy bypass.

The bus is from a Huntsville, Alabama, church, WSB-TV reported.

The bus was from Mount Zion Baptist Church, located near the intersection of Jeff and Mount Zion roads in Huntsville.

The church spokesperson told WGCL-TV that 42 people were on the bus.


Grady Memorial Hospital received nine of them. Grady officials say other hospitals in the area - Atlanta Medical Center and Southern Regional Medical Center - also received patients but they didn't know how many.

The church asked people for prayers on its Facebook page.

Family members have confirmed that Sarah Harmening was the passenger who lost her life in a tragic church bus accident in south Fulton, Thursday. "Several serious injuries. Please pray for those injured and parents as they travel to Atlanta", the post said. Another bus driver will pick up those not seriously injured and return them to Huntsville, they said.

One of those church members is Madison County Commissioner Phil Vandiver. He says both are safe.

"I got a hold of my son about two minutes after the accident and he was just rather shook-couldn't get much information but him and his mama was fine", Vandiver said.

"The students and the patients were shaken by the incident", Daniel Jackson with Atlanta Medical Center South said. "It's just tough", Few told WSB-TV.

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