A bus accident on Interstate 80 between the Grinnell and Kellogg exits left 53 college students temporarily stranded on Saturday morning.
Around 10 a.m., a bus shuttling Grinnell College students to the Des Moines International Airport for a number of holiday flights went off the road when the driver had a sudden medical emergency. The bus did not roll over, and emergency medical responders determined no students were hurt on the scene.
School buses from Newton were brought on site to transport all the passengers to Skiff Medical Center. The students were triaged in the Skiff Emergency Department, with only one of them needing treatment for a minor condition before being released.
Prior to noon, the original bus was deemed to be safe and drivable and arrangements were made to bring the vehicle to Skiff, where students could get back on board and resume their travels to Des Moines. Their luggage remained with the vehicle throughout the morning.
While waiting for transportation, the students were gathered in the Skiff cafeteria, where they were given sandwiches and burgers prepared by nutrition staff.
Mary Swoboda, chief nursing officer, said the incident went over very well.
“The organization of the ER staff was unbelievable,” she said. “They went into action as soon as the call came in and had everything prepared for the students before they arrived. I’m also incredibly impressed with the students themselves. They were so polite and cooperative, making our job of caring for them as easy as possible. It’s very gratifying for the entire staff to know that all 53 students were able to continue on safely to their families and loved ones.”
At this time, the hospital is unable to disclose any information concerning the condition of the driver.