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Update: Bus hit but kids OK

A school bus waiting to turn from the entrance of Good Christian Shepherd Academy on Hwy. 65 just outside River Falls was hit by a motorist who was later cited for inattentive driving.

None of the 22 children bound for Greenwood Elementary, Westside Elementary, St. Bridget Parish School and the River Falls Academy building were hurt in the crash last week Thursday morning.

With the aid of local police and firefighters, the kids were switched to another school bus.

School bus driver Bradley J. Ducklow, 57, 1501 Covey Drive, wasn't hurt either, even though the brunt of the collision to the bus was on the driver's side.

Jeanne M. Will, 56, Hammond, was cited by a St. Croix Sheriff's deputy for inattentive driving. She was taken to the hospital and her 2000 Dodge Durango was towed because of heavy damage.

According to the St. Croix County Sheriff's Department, Will was coming toward River Falls on Hwy. 65. She was behind Sara A. Gedatus-Garcia, 22, driving a 1999 Dodge Caravan.

Gedatus-Garcia had her mother and a 17-year-old girl as passengers. She was slowing to turn into the Good Shepherd driveway.

Will told a deputy she swerved to avoid a rear-end crash with Gedatus-Garcia's van but allegedly ended up hitting both the side of the turning van and then the waiting bus.

The speed limit in that stretch of highway is 45 mph. The van and SUV were likely slowing from that posted speed when the accident occurred.

Gedatus-Garcia, who is pregnant, was also taken by River Falls EMTs to the hospital. Her condition was not believed to be serious.

A River Falls school garage employee said the bus was banged up but drivable. It was being fixed at the garage and was expected to be in use for regular routes very soon.