By Jim Melwert and Steve Patterson
BLUE BELL, Pa. (CBS) — Police say it was a miracle no one was hurt when a school bus slammed into a home this morning in the Montgomery County town of Blue Bell.
About 7:45 a.m, Craig Kelman was in his home in the gated community of Windmere, in Blue Bell, when he heard a “thud.” He looked outside and saw a school bus sticking out of the front wall of his neighbor’s home.
“This is crazy, this is absolutely crazy, something that you don’t expect to see, nor would you ever want to see as a parent,” he told KYW Newsradio. “It’s probably your worst nightmare but, as a parent, thank goodness no kid was hurt.”
As Kelman ran to help, he says, the nine children on the bus were filing from the emergency exit in the back of the bus. He climbed onto the bus and turned off the engine.
Homeowner Jillian Lafferty says, “It sounded like an explosion. The force was so great, it pushed us on the floor.”
She adds, “Five seconds earlier and it would’ve been tragic.”
The children, students at St. Helena Elementary School, all got off safely. No one in the home was injured. The 58-year-old driver was conscious as he was taken to Abington Hospital.
“The driver was completed disoriented, holding his hands on his head, had no idea what happened,” Kelman recalls.
One brave student took some quick actions to save her classmates.
Sixth-grader Isabel Llopis says, “I just jumped out and just started screaming ‘Get out! We gotta get out!’ And everyone just followed.”
Isabel’s principal says the pre-teen’s bus safety training kicked in after the crash.
Isabel opened the security door, hustled her fellow students out of the bus and made sure everyone was okay.
Sister Cathy Shulberg says, “She’s an amazing young lady and we’re blessed to have her as part of our student body.”
The crash remained under investigation.