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Triple bus accident in PG County sends 34 students to hospital

Authorities in Prince George's County say the injuries that sent several dozen high school students to the hospital this week are "considered very minor." That may be an accurate assessment right this moment. But the thing about the type of accident these students experienced is that the full extent of their personal injuries may not be fully manifest for days or even weeks.

Authorities report that the teens were on board three school buses that had just left Fredrick Douglass High School. The time was about 3:45 p.m. and officials say the buses were moving slowly along Croom Road. Exactly what happened next isn't completely clear. A spokesman for Prince George's County schools says one bus came to a stop and was struck from behind by the next bus, which was then struck by the third.

Other versions of the accident indicate that the first two buses were stopped and the third bus started the chain reaction; hitting the second bus, which was then pushed into the first.

Fire officials say that 75 students were all evaluated at the scene for an array of injuries. They say some of the students reported suffering neck, back and other aches. Here again, the stories seem to vary. Some officials say 26 students were transported to area hospitals. Others say the number was 34. The only thing they all apparently agree on is that the injuries were minor.

Anyone who has been in a rear-end accident, even a low-speed crash, likely knows that such a sudden impact can jar the body and result in unexpected physical problems. The aches and pains these students experienced at the scene could be only the first signs of more debilitating conditions that will surface later. Victims of such accidents are well advised to contact an experienced attorney to see what options may exist for ensuring they get the full medical care necessary for a complete recovery.

Source: The Washington Post, "School buses involved in accident in Pr. George's county, minor injuries reported," Mattt Zapotosky, March 19, 2012

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