A coach at an El Paso, Texas, high school was killed when a bus returning from a track meet collided with a pickup that crossed into oncoming traffic.
KLBK-TV reports that Arcadio Duran Jr., 48, a track coach and social sciences teacher at Irvin High School, died in the crash early Sunday morning in Hudspeth County, Texas. The driver of the truck also died; students and coaches on the bus were treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
The accident occurred on U.S. Highway 62/180 in Hudspeth County, about 4 miles west of Dell City. Police say a pickup truck crossed into the westbound lanes and collided head-on with an El Paso district chartered school bus.
The pickup truck burst into flames following the collision. Passengers on the bus were evacuated through a window.
The students on the bus were from El Paso, Austin, Irvin, Andress, Chapin, Jefferson and Bowie High Schools.
El Paso officials say principals at each school notified parents of the students who were on board the bus. Counselors have also been notified and will be available to those impacted who may need grief counseling.
"Mr. Duran was a dedicated member of the Irvin faculty and a devoted coach," El Paso Superintendent Juan E. Cabrera said in a statement on the district's web site. "We will grieve along with his family and work with his students and players to help them get through this difficult time."
Officials say the charter bus was equipped with seat belts, but say it is unknown whether or not they were used.
Cabrera says the bus was transporting about 25 students and several coaches.
"The bus carried students and coaches from Jefferson, Austin, El Paso, Burges, Andress and Irvin high schools," Cabrera says. "Coaches from Chapin High School also were on the bus....Our students and staff who sustained injuries were taken to Del Sol Medical Center and University Medical Center. Their injuries were non-critical and non-life-threatening. I visited the hospitals this morning and our students and staff are doing well."
Cabrera expressed thanks to students and staff from Canutillo and Socorro, who were traveling in a caravan with the El Paso bus.
"They gave our students shelter and comfort," the superintendent said. "They remained with us until all of our students and staff were cared for."