A school bus rolled over in Mississippi on Tuesday morning, leaving the driver dead and several children seriously injured, according to local reports.
The crash happened on Highway 72 in Benton County, according to WHBQ-TV.
The Benton County Superintendent’s Office told the station eight children were hurt. Four of them were airlifted to a children’s hospital in serious condition.
The station reported that the stepfather of one of the children taken by helicopter to the hospital said his daughter had broken several bones, including her leg and jaw.
Two of the injured students have been identified as siblings Halie Williams, 13, and Nathan Williams, 15, according to the media outlet.
Halie reportedly underwent surgery and will have to wear a cast. Her brother, who reportedly helped children get off the bus after the crash, suffered minor injuries.
Authorities have identified the bus driver as Chester Cole, according to the station.
No other vehicle was reportedly involved in the crash and the exact cause is still under investigation.
WMC-TV reported that Cole’s family believe the 63-year-old driver suffered a cardiac event before the bus crashed. The station added that Cole’s granddaughter, who was a passenger on the bus, was injured but is expected to make a full recovery.
Cole reportedly clutched his chest and slumped over in his seat prior to the crash, leading the Benton County coroner to believe he had a heart attack, according to WMC.
“Chester has been driving for about five years now, and he’s one of the most dependable drivers we have in the district,” the station reported Benton County Schools Superintendent Steve Bostick said.