Six people were killed when a school bus in Chattanooga carrying 35 young children crashed, flipped on its side and was wrapped around a tree, the attorney general said.
Hamilton County District Attorney Neil Pinkston told the media that five people died at the scene and one died in hospital. Melidia Clewell, a spokeswoman for the Attorney General, confirmed the figure.
Previously, Tracy Arnold, assistant sheriff of Chattanooga, said officials will not identify students who have died, or their ages, until parents are notified. Officials said 23 children were taken to hospitals.
The bus was carrying students from Woodmore Elementary School ranging from kindergarten to fifth grade.
“Our hearts are exploding, and so are the hearts of all these people behind me, to the families, the neighborhood, the school, to all the people involved in this, we assure you that we are doing our best,” Chattanooga Police Chief said Fred Fletcher.
Fletcher told a news conference that the bus was the only vehicle involved in the accident.
At the state Capitol in Nashville, Governor Bill Haslam described the accident as a “tragic event” and offered to help.
“We will do everything we can to help in any way,” Hassan said. “It’s a sad situation anytime there is a school bus with the children involved, and that is in this case.”
Fletcher said police are interviewing the bus driver to determine what happened.