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Two Die In Collision Between Cattle Truck And Crowded School Bus

April 30, 1985

TUBA CITY, Ariz. (AP) _ A crowded school bus and a cattle truck collided on the Navajo Reservation in northern Arizona, killing two teen-age boys and critically injuring four students, officials said.

Seventeen other students on the Tuba City School District bus, aged 7 to 18, and the two drivers also were injured in the accident Monday. Fourteen, including the drivers, were treated for minor injuries and released, hospital officials said.

A 15-year-old boy was killed in the accident and a 14-year-old died early today, the state Department of Public Safety said.

The bus had stopped to let out six children when it was struck in the rear by the tractor-trailer rig hauling cattle near Middle Mesa, about 16 miles northeast of Tuba City, said Capt. D.K. Thomas, district commander of the Navajo Police Department here.

The bus turned over, and the truck overturned about 25 yards past the bus, said Sgt. Allen Schmidt of the state Department of Public Safety. The driver crawled out and kicked in window on the bus to help rescue some of the passengers, authorities said.

Thomas said the drivers would be interviewed to determine the cause of the crash.

Three of the critically injured students were being treated at the Tuba City Indian Health Services Hospital and the fourth was at the Flagstaff Medical Center in Flagstaff, 70 miles south of Tuba City.

Several cattle escaped from the overturned truck, and several others were injured and had to be killed, authorities said.