It can be hard to maintain a cool head under pressure—but especially difficult to stay calm in a situation like the one Tammy Cummings endured last week.
The school bus driver was transporting four of her special needs passengers home from their Greenville County school in South Carolina when she saw a semitrailer truck swerving wildly across the road ahead of them.
In the split seconds before the bed of the truck collided with the bus, Cummings immediately check to make sure her aide, Carletta Cyrus, and students were safe before bracing for impact.
“The bed of the truck started leaning towards me and I noticed that my aide was behind the seat the way she was supposed to be, the children were in their seats so I knew they were safe in their compartment area,” said the driver. “I just saw the bed of the truck come towards me and I held up my arms to cover my face because I knew that bed was going to hit us.”
After the collision, Cummings calmly handled the situation as her training kicked in. Upon making sure that no other vehicles were going to collide with the bus, she moved back in to the passenger area so she could reassure the children.
Luckily, none of them were injured – but when one of the students started to cry, Cummings soothed the anxious child’s anxiety by getting him to play a game on his phone until help arrived.
Though Cummings is humble over her reaction to the incident, she does say that she is “very grateful” that everyone was okay.
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Reprint (Photo by Greenville County Schools)