Tulsa Public Schools is investigating after a fire destroyed a school bus this morning. Firefighters say there was engine trouble, before the driver noticed flames--and evacuated the children. Channel 8's Kim Jackson says the district was already investigating the buses operated with compressed natural gas.
The bus driver did a great job of getting the kids off, according a district spokesperson. Looking inside and you can see just how bad it was and what she had to do. Now the question is are natural compressed gas buses safe for your children?
It may have been equipment failure. The tests have not been completed, so we cannot give a definite reason for the fire at this time," said Rosalyn Vann-Jackson, director of transportation.
The bus is a complete loss. It is one of 141-buses operated on compressed natural gas. And it comes after two drivers complained cng buses--were making them sick. One driver reportedly suffered carbon monoxide poisoning.
"At this point there were elevated levels that we have determined that employee has in her system. However we cannot determine that was from the cng bus or from some other method. It was less than what a normal smoker would have in their system," said Vann-Jackson
She says there was a problem with the bus--that lead to carbon monoxide being release.
"There was equipment failure on that bus. It would be about the same as it would be on a diesel bus as far as a turbo going out on it. So it was equipment failure. It had nothing to do with specifically something dealing with carbon monoxide or that it's a problem that would extend to any other buses," she said.
Each bus was tested with help from Hazmat. Also there are plans to install carbon monoxide detectors in each bus.
As for the bus and it's burned out wreckage--the children walked away and went to class.
The district at this point maintains-the fire and the carbon monoxide poisoning are coincidental.
Vann Jackson says fumes and flames can cause issues on cng, diesel or unleaded fueled buses.