An 18-year-old girl who was run over by a Mesa school bus yesterday has "survivable" injuries, Mesa police say.
Wynnona Brooks had been walking eastbound on Crismon Road in a crosswalk at about 6:50 a.m. when the bus, carrying about 20 students and driven by Kenneth Bischof, 59, struck her during a turn off of Broadway Road.
The impact knocked down Brooks, but the bus continued for a few more feet and stopped on top of her.
With a dislocated hip, broken femur and extensive road rash, cops say she remained trapped under the bus until rescue workers showed up and extricated her.
Police don't think Bischof, who's on paid leave until an investigation is complete, was impaired by drugs or alcohol.
That doesn't leave any good explanations for the collision, as far as we can tell.
We tried to reach Helen Hollands, spokeswoman for Mesa Public Schools, this morning, but she was unavailable.
Yesterday, she told the Arizona Republic that "The situation is under investigation by both the police and the school district -- we are looking at either a blind spot or an issue with the light at that time of day."
In other words, Bischof just didn't see the teen in the crosswalk.
UPDATE: Sergeant Ed Wessing of the Mesa police called us back a few minutes ago and made it clear that Brooks had been lawfully in the crosswalk, and that she had a green light.
As she walked from west to east on Crismon toward Skyline High School, the bus approached on Broadway from the opposite direction and started to make a left-hand turn onto Crismon.
Witnesses said Brooks took about five or six steps into the crosswalk, then noticed that the bus wasn't stopping as it approached her.
"She started to run and didn't quite make it," Wessing it.
Brooks was wedged between a tire and the wheel-well. Wessing isn't sure how long she remained there until the rescue -- it was at least a few minutes.
"At minimum," Wessing says, Bischof will receive a civil citation for failure to yield to a pedestrian while turning left.
But police are investigating whether the incident involved something more serious, and expect to see a video recorded from the on-board camera.
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