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Published: Sunday, 10/13/2002

6 children remain hospitalized

ERIE, Mich. - Six Detroit-area children were still hospitalized yesterday and being treated for injuries suffered when a tractor-trailer slammed into their school bus Thursday on a field trip to an apple orchard.

Five children were in St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center. Four children were listed in serious condition, and one was listed in fair.

One child was transferred from St. Vincent to Children's Hospital of Michigan in Detroit and her condition was unavailable last night.

A 4-year-old girl was released yesterday from St. Anne Mercy Hospital.

A girl was discharged yesterday morning from the University of Michigan Health System in Ann Arbor, Mich.

A truck driver hauling 76,000 pounds of steel coil hit the school bus carrying 41 first graders and 17 adult chaperones from Detroit's Pierre Toussant Academy, a free public charter school.

A caravan of four buses left the charter school for the trip to Erie Orchards & Cider Mill. The buses had stopped for a stop sign at the intersection of Telegraph and Erie roads heading westbound.

The third bus pulled in the truck driver's path. The truck driver, Clayton McGowan, tried to stop and skidded at least 60 feet, smashing into the bus.

The bus driver, Beverly Smith, 27, of Detroit, had gotten her commercial driver's license on Oct. 4.

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