Thursday, February 21, 2008


As members of the Minnesota School Bus Operators Association we are all devastated by the accident in Cottonwood. MSBOA is made up of school bus contractors but this industry includes many more people, managers, school bus drivers, bus assistants, and mechanics all with the same goal of providing safe transportation for Minnesota's children. On February 19, 2008 four of those precious children were taken away from those who love them the most - their families.

Our thoughts and prayers go to the families that have suffered this devastating loss, their friends, their school and the whole community of Cottonwood.

We keep in mind Palmer Bus Company, the driver involved in the accident, and all their drivers in this time of suffering. On February 19, the bus driver was faced with a terrible situation that we all train for and pray never happens. He was obviously trained well to remain calm and see to the safety of his students as his first priority. As we all know, a driver can develop relationships with children that are very strong as they transport those students throughout their school careers. This had to be an extremely difficult time for him. As industry professionals, we can be proud of the manner in which he responded.

The driver was not alone is his heroic efforts, there were others that helped him that day. The nurse who first arrived on the scene, the fire and police crews who knew each of the students on the bus, the school staff, the clergy, and the community of Cottonwood who all grieve together.

If you would like to donate to the memorial fund established in Cottonwood, the address is:

United Southwest Bank
P.O. Box 288
Cottonwood, MN 56229

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