UPDATE: The car driver involved in Owen County’s two-vehicle fatal crash has been identified as Ronald E. Denton Jr., 61, of Indianapolis, the Owen County Coroner’s Office confirmed Sunday.
His family has been notified.
OWEN COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) – A crash between a Spencer Owen Community School bus and a car Thursday afternoon has left one person dead.
Around 4 p.m., Indiana State Troopers (ISP) and Owen County Deputies responded to calls of a crash between a school bus and a 2003 Toyota on SR 67, just north of Gosport.
Preliminary investigation shows that a yellow 2015 International bus being driven by Taresa L. Tharpe, 56 of Gosport was traveling northbound on S.R. 67 approaching Culross Road when the bus driver had to make evasive maneuvers to avoid a southbound passenger car that was driving erratically and had entered the northbound lane of travel. Tharpe had attempted to steer the bus onto the shoulder when it was hit head-on by the car.
The driver of the car succumbed to their injuries, ISP said. An autopsy was Friday.
At the time of the crash, the bus was occupied by 12 students and Tharpe. Each student was evaluated by emergency responders. Nine of the kids were taken to area hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries. All other passengers were transported to Gosport Elementary where they were assisted by the district.
A Toxicology test was provided by Tharpe and results are pending, which is required by law for vehicle operators involved in serious injury or fatal crashes, ISP said.
ISP said S.R. 67 remained closed until around 8 p.m. between Smith Road and Culross Road for the crash investigation and removal of the vehicles.
The Indiana State Police were assisted by the Owen County Sheriff Department, Wayne Township Volunteer Fire Department, Owen County EMS, Owen County Coroner and the Spencer Owen Community School Corporation.