Randolph County, North Carolina School Bus Driver Crashes After Falling Asleep at the Wheel | Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp

A Randolph County, North Carolina (N.C.) school bus driver was suspended recently due to a morning route bus crash. According to information provided by Fox News Channel 8, the school bus driver explained to N.C. State Highway Patrol troopers that he fell asleep behind the wheel, which caused the bus to strike a mailbox before careening off the shoulder and straight down an embankment.

Multiple media outlets had reported that 47-year-old Stewart Ray Gatlin, of Seagrove, North Carolina (N.C.) told Troopers the excuse that he had taken allergy medications the night before the Randolph County school bus crash. Gatlin claimed that it might have caused him to become drowsy and to fall asleep while operating the Randolph High School bus.

A spokesperson with Randolph County Schools maintained that the school bus crashed down an embankment around 6:30 a.m., near the junction of Charles Mountain Road and Hogan Farm Trail. “We felt it swerve. We thought he was trying to miss an animal or something, and then it didn’t stop. Everything started flying to one side. We couldn’t really see what happened, as it happened so fast,”one student passenger said. At least one of the five students on board suffered an elbow injury in the school bus accident.

First responders to the school bus accident treated the injured at the crash scene, and later was assisted at the nearby urgent care facility in Randolph County, N.C.. After the dust settled N.C.Highway Patrol troopers gave Gatlin a citation for speeding and driving left of center. Randolph County school system has also temporarily suspended him as a bus driver until officials finalize the investigation.

As with all serious injury cases, it is especially crucial to seek out professional legal advice in school bus accident injury cases and we have the experienced injury attorneys to evaluate your claim. Our firm is ready to assist you  in reviewing your specific situation to see if your claim meets our criteria. In North Carolina, as well as every other state, there are laws on how long you have to file a suit also. School bus wrecks are also a bit different because the at-fault party may be a government employee. Don’t hesitate, call our toll free number and get confidential legal advice if your child was hurt in an accident.