Pickup truck, school bus collide head-on in Bedford; truck driver arrested on OWI charge


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BEDFORD, Ind. – Police arrested a man in connection with a head-on crash involving a school bus in Bedford Monday afternoon.

According to Bedford Police Chief Dennis Parsley, the crash happened around 3:20 p.m. at 5th St. and E St. A pickup truck driven by Richard Dickerson failed to negotiate a curve, crossed the center line and hit a Bedford North Lawrence bus head-on. Police said weather and road conditions “were not a factor in any way.”

After the crash, Dickerson ran off. He was apprehended and charged with operating while intoxicated, resisting law enforcement, leaving the scene of an accident and possession of marijuana.

Parsley said 27 children were on the bus at the time. There were no major injuries, although two people in Dickerson’s truck were taken to an area hospital as a precaution.

North Lawrence Community Schools Superintendent Gary Conner arrived at the scene of the crash and said students and their parents were calm, patient and respectful. He thanked the “united effort” provided by first responders to assist students at the scene.

Conner has directed administrators to call the parent of every student involved in the crash for a follow-up assessment. Injuries among the students involved bloody lips and minor bruising. The bus driver, David Lee, went to the hospital as a precaution.

Conner made it clear in a message to the school board that Lee was in no way at fault for the crash, writing that “there was nothing the driver could have done to avoid the accident.”

The superintendent commended Lee for his response, saying he helped students immediately after the crash.

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