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Bellevue bus driver cited after collision

Cary Ashby • Apr 10, 2019 at 9:46 AM

Authorities said a Bellevue City Schools bus driver was at fault in connection with a non-injury, rear-end collision Tuesday morning.

Virgie L. Freeman, 72, of Green Springs, was charged with failure to maintain assured clear distance. Huron County Sheriff’s Lt. Bill Duncan said Freeman, the two students in her bus and the other driver, Ross L. Pendleton, 50, of Marblehead, weren’t injured.

“None reported at all,” he added.

The two-vehicle crash at the intersection of U.S. 20 and East Ohio 61 was called into the sheriff’s office at 6:37 a.m.

“It was reported as a rear-end accident,” Duncan said. “The driver of the Jeep claimed he reduced speed and the bus did not and that resulted in the bus striking him. … They were eastbound, but we don’t know their destinations.”

Freeman was driving a 2004 International school bus. Duncan said the Jeep Wrangler driven by Pendleton sustained significant damage to the rear.

“Both vehicles had to be towed from the scene,” Duncan said.

The Norwalk Fire Department responded to the scene. Firefighters, according to their report, blocked the road with an engine until the vehicles were moved. The crew was at the crash site nearly 80 minutes.

Duncan said a parent retrieved one student and another Bellevue school vehicle transported the other student to school. 

Superintendent Kim Schubert was out of the district Tuesday and couldn’t be reached for comment.

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