Man dead, 13 students hurt after car runs stop sign, crashes with bus near Laurel: Police

EDITOR'S NOTE: A previous version of this story listed the incorrect gender of the person killed. This story has been updated to reflect Delaware State Police's corrected information.

A 21-year-old Delaware man died and 13 students were injured – one seriously – after a car ran a stop sign near Laurel and collided with a Montessori school bus on Monday afternoon, Delaware State Police said.

Several dozen first responders were called to East Trap Pond and Hardscrabble roads just after 3:45 p.m. Monday after receiving reports that the bus had overturned, according to first responder emergency radio communications.

When police and firefighters arrived, they found both the bus and the car overturned on the grass several hundred feet away from one another. The driver of the car, who police identified Wednesday as Taylor Maurer, died at the scene. Photos from the crash showed tarps covering the vehicle.

INITIAL STORY:1 killed in Laurel crash involving school bus; children pulled from overturned vehicle

Police said Maurer was not wearing his seat belt.

While 12 of the 13 students on the Sussex Montessori School bus were able to get out, one was trapped, radio communications said.

A school bus and another vehicle collided in a fatal crash at Hardscrabble Road at East Trap Pond Road near Laurel on Monday, Jan. 23, 2023, Delaware State Police said.
A school bus and another vehicle collided in a fatal crash at Hardscrabble Road at East Trap Pond Road near Laurel on Monday, Jan. 23, 2023, Delaware State Police said.

USA Today Network freelance photographer Wayne Barrall said the driver of the bus, a 34-year-old woman, stayed on the school bus until the child was freed by firefighters. Police said one student was seriously hurt and was airlifted to the hospital, though did not confirm that it was the student who was trapped.

The bus driver was wearing her seat belt and suffered non life-threatening injuries. She was treated at a local hospital and later released police said.

Twelve of the students were also released from the hospital after being treated, police said.

MORE:What we know about the fatal crash involving a school bus in Laurel Monday afternoon

Troopers closed the road for about five hours as they investigated, during which they determined Maurer – whom police initially identified as a woman – was driving south on East Trap Road when he neared the intersection with Hardscrabble Road. There is a stop sign at the intersection for drivers on East Trap Road, police said.

The bus was driving on Hardscrabble Road toward the same intersection. There is no stop sign for traffic on that road.

For "unknown reasons," Maurer, who was in a Honda Civic, ran the stop sign and entered the intersection, police said. There, he "proceeded directly into the path of the school bus."

Police said the bus driver tried to swerve to avoid hitting the Civic but couldn't. Her vehicle hit the passenger side of the car, causing it to flip and leave the road.

The bus also went off the road and landed on its left side.

In a Facebook post around 6:30 p.m. Monday, Sussex Montessori School shared that it was aware of the crash and had been in touch with the hospital, school leaders and staff present with children and families.

It also said it would provide "additional mental health resources to support our students and families at the school."

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This article originally appeared on Delaware News Journal: Delaware school bus crash near Laurel: Police say 1 dead, 13 kids hurt