Driver of bus carrying Barton College cross country team involved in crashes; 1 hospitalized

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Saturday, October 21, 2023
Bus with Barton College student-athletes involved in crash
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Barton College officials confirm the bus was carrying their cross-country team

CABARRUS COUNTY, N.C. (WTVD) -- A tour bus carrying student-athletes from the Triangle area was involved in multiple crashes on Interstate 85 Friday afternoon. The crashes led to the shutdown of I-85 in Cabarrus County.

Officials with Barton College, which is based in Wilson, NC, confirmed on Saturday the bus was carrying their cross-country team to the Conference Carolinas Championship in Charlotte.

ABC Affiliate WSOC's Chopper captured aerials of the accident. In the video, you can see multiple cars, a van, and the charter bus sustained serious damage.

NC State Highway Patrol (NCSHP) said four people in all were taken to the hospital for injuries. However, troopers did not have information about the severity of the injuries to the victims.

Barton College sent ABC11 a statement confirming one student-athlete was hospitalized as a precaution and is in the care of her parents. Students and Barton staff who were traveling with the team spent the night in Charlotte and returned to campus in Wilson on Saturday.

According to NCSHP, the bus driver was speeding and hit multiple cars.

Charges against the driver are pending, the highway patrol said. No other information has been released.

Full statement from Barton College: "Barton College's Cross Country Team traveling by bus on Friday, Oct. 20, to the Conference Carolinas Championship in Charlotte was in a traffic accident in Cabarrus County. Members of Barton's administration have been in constant communication with Coach Tim Foster and are thankful that all student-athletes and staff are safe. One student athlete was taken to the hospital for a 24-hour observation, as a precaution. She is in the care of her parents. The other student-athletes have been examined, with appropriate protocols being followed, to confirm they are in good condition. The Coach and team remained in Charlotte overnight and are traveling back to campus today. Barton College's first and top priority is always the health and safety of its students."