Bus Crash Kills 1 Child and Injures 45 People: 'We Started Just Flipping About 15 or 20 Times'
"It went down a hill, over a service road and down another hill," an adult passenger said
A heartbreaking scene unfolded near Benton, Arkansas, on Monday morning after a bus carrying a youth football team crashed.
Arkansas State Police said in a statement that one child died and 45 people were injured in the accident.
A few adults and about 40 kids were on the bus, the Memphis Commercial Appeal reported. The kids were between the ages of 7 to 12.
Kameron Johnson, 9, was identified as the child killed, The New York Times reported. In a press conference, an official from Aspire Coleman Elementary School in Memphis, Tennessee, said that the child who died was a third-grade student at the school.
The Saline County coroner did not immediately return PEOPLE’s request for comment.
The group was on the bus for a happy occasion: The team had played in a Dallas championship game over the weekend and was en route to Memphis after its conclusion.
According to police, the driver said in a statement that “she lost control of the vehicle causing it to roll off Interstate 30” at 2:40 a.m. local time. Arkansas Children’s Hospital and hospitals in Saline County and Pulaski County are treating people injured in the crash.
RELATED VIDEO: Kate Middleton and Prince William Pay Tribute to Soccer Club Chairman Who Died in Helicopter Crash
Damous Hailey, an adult on the bus, told the Commercial Appeal he “heard [the driver] swerve.”
“I was seated right behind her, and I knew immediately what was going on as we started just flipping about 15 or 20 times,” he said. “It went down a hill, over a service road and down another hill.”
At Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Dr. Todd Maxson told reporters that the crash was a “mass casualty event,” according to the Commercial Appeal. After the crash, 26 children were hospitalized there, and 22 had been released.
“Very few are critically injured,” Maxson said. He noted that “significant fractures” were among the injuries.
Scott Shuttle Service — which is based in Somerville, Tennessee — owned the bus.