• NC school districts must shut off antifreeze valves after students burned

    Updated:

    NORTH CAROLINA - School districts across North Carolina must immediately shut off hose valves carrying antifreeze in all rear-engine buses.               

    The order comes after five children in Union County were injured when hot antifreeze spewed onto their school bus.

    A hose connected to the engine of the school bus burst, spraying scalding antifreeze on students.

    READ MORE:  Officials: 5 students hurt, 1 seriously in school bus anti-freeze leak

    The incident left five students in need of medical treatment and many more with small burns and soaked book bags. 

    Eyewitness News uncovered the state sent the same warning about the need to check the valves on rear engine buses two years ago.

    The Department of Public Instruction sent a letter Friday stating all valves on rear-engine buses across the state should be shut off until those parts are inspected and repaired.

    Channel 9 spoke to the attorney representing a 13-year-old girl recovering from severe burns on her legs and feet.

    “I think this could have easily been avoided. The parents think the exact same thing. They are very upset it's their daughter hurt so severely qho is at home right now and would rather be in school,” attorney William Goldfarb said.

    There are more than 13,500 school buses in North Carolina. About 300 of them are rear-engine buses that fit the model causing concern.

    Channel 9 reached out to the company who made the buses in the past.

    "The letter, provided by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, was directed to local transportation directors as a precautionary measure and refers to 20-year-old bus models no longer manufactured by Thomas Built Buses," said a spokesman in an email.

    Amani Miller was riding a different bus home from Porter Ridge Middle School but his parents were just as concerned. 

    “If everything is in the name of kids and being safe, they should have taken care of that prior to,” said his father Tony Miller.

    Channel reached out to the state to find out just how many of these rear-engine buses -- are in local schools.

    CLICK HERE to see the full list of rear-engine buses.

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