MONTVILLE, Ohio (WJW) — Dylan Boyland, a full-time mechanic with the City of Medina School Transportation Department, was driving a school bus for the first time with students on board as part of his driver training Tuesday morning.
Near the end of his morning route, with approximately 15 students on board, Boyland was arrested while picking up students on his way to school.
“The first time with kids on the bus, you really have to get into that driving mode and just practice the best you know you can do,” Boyland said.
On its penultimate stop, cameras inside and inside the bus show a student just seated when he hears the sound of a truck horn coming from behind.
“You could hear the horn before you could see the truck,” Boyland said.
From a dash cam mounted in the truck, it is clear that the panicked driver is unable to stop the truck and must make a split-second decision to avoid a catastrophic collision.
“You have to take a situation and you have to identify it, predict the outcome, decide what you’re going to do, and then do it to make those decisions in that short window and maneuver around the vehicles that he’s been through, that’s a of my heroes after watching it,” said Medina Schools transportation director Robert Travis.
The truck’s dash cam shows a vehicle behind the school bus pulling off the road.
A front-facing camera on the school bus shows the driver of a pickup truck stopped for the bus in the opposite lanes, backing into another SUV, trying to create as big of a space as possible for the race truck to pass.
“In his statement he told us he was trying to stop. He realized he couldn’t stop in time and he started downshifting, honking, turning on the headlights, flashing the headlights and doing everything in his power to alert everyone – the oncoming traffic, the car behind the school bus and the bus – that he’s coming and he won’t be able to get away. stop,” Montville Police Chief Matt Neil said.
Boyland made the decision to keep his bus where it was.
“You need to know how long you have to move and where you are in the situation,” Boyland said.
“If they had moved, they would have moved into his path instead of staying out of it,” Travis said.
Videos show the truck narrowly missing the bus as it overtakes it on the driver’s side, with the truck driver managing to squeeze it through a small opening without hitting anyone or anything.
“He did a great job in 15 seconds, he had to put this 80,000 pound rig somewhere and he was able to thread that needle and do it without hurting or hitting anything,” Neil said.
“To see the cameras, the video at first was a bit shocking but the more we watched the more we saw the things that went well that morning,” Travis said.
Chief Neil says any questions that might arise watching a truck race around a school bus stopped at a bus stop are put into perspective by watching the video of the truck, on which the driver could be clearly heard desperately doing everything possible to avoid a collision.
“One of the things we take away from that is, how different you can have a view when there’s a dash cam involved, you can see what’s really going on, whether it’s in the truck, on the school bus or if any of the other vehicles had a dash cam,” Neil said.
The truck was eventually able to be slowed to a stop about a quarter mile from the incident.
Boyland said many of the kids on the bus didn’t even seem to realize the gravity of what was happening at the time.
“Some of them kinda knew what was going on, but others were like ‘what was that truck?'” Boyland said.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol is investigating the incident, focusing on maintenance and inspections of the truck, including a pre-driver inspection.
This pilot, meanwhile, is complemented by everyone involved for the decisions he made with seconds to spare.