16 St. Ignatius College Prep students injured after truck crashes into hockey team bus in Indiana: police

The truck driver, who failed a sobriety test, was arrested, police said, and charges of driving while under the influence are pending. The team had played at Culver Military Academy and was headed to a hotel at the time of the crash in Warsaw, about 50 miles south of South Bend.

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The scene of a bus crash involving St. Ignatius College Prep hockey players and a semi driver in Warsaw, Indiana.

The scene of a bus crash involving St. Ignatius College Prep hockey players and a semi driver in Warsaw, Indiana.

Warsaw police

Sixteen students from St. Ignatius College Prep were injured when a tractor-trailer rig crashed into their bus Saturday evening in Indiana.

The speeding and swerving semi struck the bus around 8 p.m. in Warsaw, about 50 miles south of South Bend, Warsaw police said in a statement.

On board the bus were 23 student-athletes from the St. Ignatius junior varsity boys Wolfpack hockey team and two coaches. The team was headed to a hotel from dinner after competing in a tournament earlier in the day at Culver (Ind.) Military Academy.

Police said they arrested the truck driver on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. Charges have not been announced. Officers on the scene “detected a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage on his person and in the cab of the semi,” according to police.

The bus driver was turning left off U.S. 30 when the semi driver went through a red light and struck the rear of the bus, flipping the bus on its side, police said.

The semi driver continued west and was stopped less than a mile away from the intersection after driving off the roadway and into a ditch, police said.

Three of the students were in “very critical” condition after the crash and were taken to Fort Wayne Lutheran Hospital. They had been upgraded to “stable” condition by Sunday morning, Warsaw Police Capt. Brad Kellar said.

One of those students had come out of surgery Sunday morning, St. Ignatius Director of Communications Kristyn Hartman said. Coaches of the team said the other two students were “smiling and communicating,” after being treated at the trauma center, where they all remain, she said.

Ten other people on the bus were uninjured, police said. All were taken by another school bus to Lutheran Kosciusko Hospital, where officers notified relatives, police said. The students are 14 to 17 years old.

Police said they already were responding to calls reporting a semi driver “swerving into other lanes and driving at excessive speed” before being alerted that the driver had crashed into the school bus.

An official from St. Ignatius said a Mass for the students was being planned for Monday.

“Our thoughts, prayers, and heartfelt concern are with” the coaches and players, St. Ignatius President John Chandler wrote in an email to parents.

St. Ignatius College Prep, 1076 E. Roosevelt Rd.

A school bus carrying students from St. Ignatius College Prep was stuck by a semi in Indiana on Saturday. Members of the school’s junior varsity boys hockey team were on their way to a hotel after a tournament at Culver Military Academy. A Mass for the students is planned Monday at the school, 1076 W. Roosevelt Rd.

Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times

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