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BUTLER, Pa. (KDKA) — A Butler County school bus driver, who lost control of her bus in a construction zone, was found not guilty Thursday of careless driving.
Sandra Boehler’s school bus went sliding down a hill as it drove through a construction zone on Route 228 in Adams Township last September. Fortunately, there were only minor injuries.
“That lady had been driving for years and years, had never had an accident. There was no way, she was being as careful as careful could be,” said defense attorney Michael Moser.
An emotional Boehler went before a district justice Thursday, refuting claims by Adams Township Police that her careless driving caused the accident. She testified that she was swerving to avoid an oncoming tractor trailer when she lost control.
A witness confirmed it, and the judge found her not guilty.
“I think she did the best she could. I think had she not handled it the way she did, it could have been worse,” Moser said.
Her lawyer argued that the construction zone was poorly designed, not safe for wide vehicles.
KDKA has learned that another school bus had an accident in the same place, taking out the guardrail months before this accident. It was never repaired.
“It was all made worse because there was no guiderail there in the area right after. Why was there not a guide rail? Because another school bus had taken that guiderail out weeks or months before. Nobody bothered to fix it,” Moser said.
Boehler dodged our camera and declined to talk about the accident, but her attorney spoke in her behalf.
“She loves those kids, she loved her job, she felt terrible that she was even present for anything where kids might have gotten hurt,” he said.
Boehler retired from bus driving right after the accident. It was the only crash she had in 14 years.