Sunday, December 4, 2022

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Graham, NC 27253
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Bus driver charged after Burlington accident Wed. afternoon

A bus accident on Wednesday afternoon in Burlington resulted in a two cars being smashed into one another, totaling one of the cars.

Burlington police responded around 3:55 p.m. to a motor vehicle crash involving three vehicles on Alamance Road (NC 62) near Hatchery Road, just south of I-85/40. One of the vehicles was a school bus belonging to Alamance-Burlington School System (Bus #31), driven by Michael Maness, white, male, age 28.

Maness is a current employee of ABSS and a P.E. teacher at Smith Elementary.  Maness normally operates Bus #31 and was driving his daily route, according to police.

The school bus was occupied with 44 students from Williams High School ranging in ages from 15-18, according to the police department. ABSS interim superintendent Dr. Jim Merill and the high school’s administration staff were notified and facilitated the reunion of the bus riders with parents/guardians.

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There were four students that alleged injury resulting from the collision and were treated by Alamance County EMS for non-critical injuries.

According to the police, Maness was traveling south on Alamance Road just past the intersection of Hatchery Road when he failed to reduce speed, striking a 2012 Toyota Camry driven by Kristin Pinnix, white, female, 53 years old, from Burlington.

As a result of the collision, Pinnix’s 2012 Toyota Camry was shoved into the rear of a 2015 Chevrolet truck driven by James Knight, white, male, 36, of Liberty.

Both drivers had stopped due to an unrelated vehicle attempting a left turn into Flynt Fabrics at 2908 Alamance Road, causing southbound traffic to halt.

Maness told police on the scene that he was distracted by an inoperable vehicle (not involved in crash) parked on the southbound shoulder of Alamance Road that was not blocking traffic, according to police.

There were multiple persons standing around the broken-down vehicle next to the road.  Upon shifting his focus back to the road directly in front of him, Maness realized traffic had stopped, and he was unable to brake, resulting in the bus striking the rear of the 2012 Toyota Camry at approximately 40 miles per hour.

Bus #31 and the Chevrolet truck sustained minor damage; however, the Toyota Camry – which was sandwiched between the bus and the truck – is a total loss, according to police.
Police determined that Maness was the sole contributory driver in the collision and was cited for failing to reduce speed to avoid a collision; his court date was set for August 12.

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