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10 students, bus driver treated after Laurel bus crash

Ten students and a bus driver were taken to hospitals in London and Corbin early Thursday after the driver of an SUV hit a Laurel County Schools bus, police said.

The driver and students were not seriously injured, according to a news release from the London Police Department.

The driver of the Mercury Mountaineer that hit the bus, Jeffrey G. House, 48, of London, had more serious injuries and was taken by helicopter to the University of Kentucky Hospital. He was in fair condition Thursday night.

House was driving on a suspended license and will face criminal charges, police said.

Police did not provide information on whether House has had prior criminal charges.

However, a person of the same name and age was charged with impaired driving in London last February after hitting a utility pole with his Mercury Mountaineer.

The man had pill residue in his nose and told an officer he snorted pain medication, according to the citation.

That man also pleaded guilty to DUI in 2002 after police found whiskey in his vehicle, according to court records.

Thursday's wreck happened as 14 students and a teacher from Hunter Hills Elementary School in southern Laurel County were headed to a Baptist church in London to practice for a choral performance, said Greg Smith, a deputy school superintendent.

Police said House, who was traveling in the opposite direction of the bus, crossed the center line and hit the bus. The wreck happened about 8:30 a.m. on Ky. 1006 in London.

The bus driver, Angela Calvert, 31, told police she honked the horn to try to get House's attention. However, she told police he never looked up before hitting the bus in the left front side, according to the news release.

School officials said Calvert braked and moved over as far as possible but could not avoid a hard impact by the SUV.

"We were extremely fortunate" that Calvert and her passengers were not seriously hurt, said Laurel County Superintendent David Young. "The driver did an excellent job in positioning the bus."