School district bus driver saves the day

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By Reece Murphy

INDIAN LAND – A Lancaster County couple is crediting their daughter’s school bus driver with saving her life in an accident Oct. 15.


Teresa and Jason Moore are convinced their 10-year-old daughter Aimee would have been seriously injured had it not been for the vigilance and quick action of Indian Land Elementary School bus driver Lisa Broughton.

The accident occurred shortly before 2:30 p.m. Oct. 15 when Broughton, known as “Miss Lisa” at ILES, stopped to let Aimee off at the foot of the Moore family’s driveway on Harrisburg Road.

“Aimee was about to get off the bus when a landscape truck came down the road. Miss Lisa heard the squealing of tires and told Aimee to sit down real quick,” Teresa Moore said. “I think if she hadn’t been paying attention and reacted, Aimee would have been thrown and seriously injured, or worse, if she was out of the bus.

“She saved Aimee’s life,” Teresa Moore said. “She was so quick, and so quick to help; wouldn’t even get off the bus herself until all her babies were off the bus and taken care of. I think she’s a hero for a lot of kids in this area.”

Aimee said she remembers thinking maybe the truck would pull over. She said when it became apparent it wasn’t going to, Broughton told her to sit down real quickly. 

“I think it was very helpful for her to do that,” the fifth-grader said. “I was standing and probably would have flown forward. Instead I was sitting down and didn’t get hurt at all. I think that kind of saved my life.” 

Jason Moore, who was in his shop at home and rushed to the scene moments after the accident, said he was extremely impressed by Broughton’s actions. 

“There were kids who were upset and she was telling them, ‘Sweetheart, you’re going to be OK,” he said. “I don’t remember if she fell or what, but she hurt herself, bruised her leg, helping. 

“She just went into a mode of handling it so professionally,” he said. “You can tell she cares about that job and she cares about the kids.”

Lancaster County School District Safety and Transportation Director Bryan Vaughn said there were 39 ILES students aboard the bus. None were seriously injured, although two were taken to Carolinas Medical Center in Pineville to be checked out. 

The driver of the flatbed landscape truck, which was towing a Bobcat loader on a trailer, and his passengers were not injured, but the driver was later charged with driving too fast for conditions, Vaughn said. 

ILES Assistant Principal Steven Puckett said if the accident had to happen, it couldn’t have happened to a more professional and conscientious employee than Miss Lisa.

“She’s the kind of driver who knows every child on her bus and knows what’s going on in her bus at all times,” Puckett said. “Every day she comes in and treats that job like it’s the most important job in the world. 

“(The accident) was a perfect example of how when you do a job professionally, day in and day out, and you know what you have to do, when the time comes to make the best decision, you’re ready,” he said. 

Broughton said the accident was the first in her 13 years of driving a school bus.

She said Aimee was about halfway down the aisle when she looked in her left mirror and saw the truck approach and start skidding, tires smoking, toward the back of the bus. Broughton said she didn’t really have time to do much but yell, “Hold on, Aimee! Hold on, Aimee!” 

“I’m just glad she wasn’t getting off the bus,” Broughton said. “If she was in the stairwell, she’d have been thrown out the door and it could have been much worse.”

Broughton said her actions after the accident came largely as second nature thanks to the training she and other bus drivers receive during safety meetings throughout the year. 

When it comes to being hailed a hero, though, Broughton is modest.

“I feel honored in a way, but then, in a way, I was just protecting my babies,” she said. “People don’t realize that these kids grow up with us; they usually stay on our buses year after year, so they’re like our own kids as well.

“I just want people to please slow down,” Broughton said. “If you think it’s time for school buses to be rolling, please slow down. We’re actually carrying our future, and we all have to protect our future.”

Aimee said she also thanks Miss Lisa for what she did and said she thinks it helped create a special bond between them.

“She was always really nice, but I think it might have made us a little bit closer because I used to be one of the first dropped off and now I’m like the last person to be dropped off,” Aimee said. 


 Contact reporter  Reece Murphy at (803) 283-1151