North Carolina Highway Patrol reports that charges are still pending after a driver slammed his SUV into the back of a Lenoir County, North Carolina school bus filled with students coming home from school. The driver, 21-yr-old Jay Jackson, was airlifted all the way to Pitt County Memorial Hospital from the school bus accident scene with serious injuries.

Bus number 116 from Woodington Middle School had been making a stop and was full of students when the SUV rear-ended the precious cargo at around 3:30 p.m. out along Highway 11 South in Deep Run, North Carolina.  At the time of the wreck there were exactly 35 students on the bus. The driver of the SUV was going fast enough to cause him to be trapped inside this vehicle for 40 minutes until emergency rescuers could get him out.

Out of the 35 students on board the bus, approximately 11 of them had injuries serious enough to require observation and treatment from nearby Lenoir Hospital. In fact, the entire accident scene required that Highway 11 be shut down for over an hour. As of this writing the exact impact of the crash on the students and the injuries sustained is not entirely clear.

A typical medical consequence of a rear-end collision, even in case of collisions at moderate speed, is whiplash. In more severe cases permanent injuries and herniation may occur. For purposes of insurance and policing, the driver of the vehicle that rear-ends the other vehicle is almost always considered to be at fault due to not being within stopping distance or lack of attention. An exception to this rule comes into play if the rear-ended vehicle is in reverse gear. Typically, if the driver of the car that was rear-ended files a claim against the driver who hit him, said driver could be responsible for all damages to the other driver’s car and all other subsequent personal injuries that may have occurred.