California teenagers riding a bus that collided with a FedEx truck on Thursday were part of a program that buses disadvantaged students to Humboldt State College, according to a heartbreaking New York Times article.
That program, called Preview Plus, allows hundreds of teens from low-income families who have been accepted to Humboldt to come tour the university. Humboldt had chartered three buses filled with a number of kids who would be the first in their families to go to college.
For the kids on one of those buses, the hopeful trip turned terrifying after a FedEx tractor-trailer jumped a divider and rammed into the bus. Five kids and three chaperones were killed, and more than 30 others were injured.
Frightened students looked on helplessly as their friends remained trapped in the burning bus, according to The Times. The news of the fiery collision was traumatic for the kids on the other two buses. From The Times:
For students who, by chance, ended up on one of the other buses, news of the crash was chilling and surreal. They arrived safely on the campus in Arcata, a bucolic town tucked into the redwood forest on California’s northern coast. After a moment of silence on Friday, activities resumed as planned.
“I was tripped out because we were supposed to go before them,” said Adrian Romo, an 18-year-old high school student from San Diego, who had ridden on the other bus from Los Angeles. “Everyone was saying, ‘It could have been us.'”
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