Students steer school bus to safety after 77-year-old driver suffers medical episode at the wheel

Students riding a bus to school Monday morning in Topsham, Maine jumped into action after their 77-year-old driver collapsed at the wheel.

Their quick reactions potentially saved not only their lives, but others on the road too. Unfortunately, their driver, Arthur McDougall, later died at the hospital.
The incident occurred around 7:30 a.m. as McDougall made his way to the local middle school and high school.

When he lost control of the school bus, several of the 14 students onboard hurried to stop the bus.

“One kid steered the bus and pulled the emergency brake, one called 911, and some of the kids got off the bus to try to stop other cars,” Topsham Police Chief Marc Hagan said.

Another student began CPR on McDougall.

The two students who helped steer the bus to safety were reportedly brothers, one in high school and the other in middle school.

Once emergency services arrived they took over the scene.

McDougall was transported to a hospital in Brunswick before being flown to another hospital in Portland. Unfortunately, the 77-year-old driver did not survive.

Thankfully none of the students were injured.

“It’s great that they stood up and went into action,” Hagan said. “I don’t know how many lives they may have saved.”

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