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17-year-old girl grabs wheel as bus driver collapses

A 17-year-old girl with little driving practice saves a school bus full of students as the driver has an apparent heart attack.
/ Source: NBCPhiladelphia.com

Graceann Rumer just started driving two weeks ago. She used the few driving skills she had to save a school bus full of students by grabbing the steering wheel as the driver collapsed Tuesday afternoon.

The 17-year-old senior at Calvary Christian Academy in Philadelphia had been driving to school for practice a lot lately, but, luckily for all, on Tuesday she happened to take the bus.

Rumer and about three dozen other students were riding the bus home when the 51-year-old driver suddenly collapsed at about 3:30 p.m., falling from the driver’s seat on to the ground.

With the driver obstructing the brake pedal, Rumer acted quickly — grabbing the wheel of the moving bus and making a U-turn to slow it down and change direction, as it was heading into oncoming traffic, witnesses say.

With still no access to the brake pedal, Rumer put the bus into park and successfully and safely stopped it, according to witnesses and bus company officials.

None of the students were injured. Sadly, the bus driver — Charles Duncan — died of what appears to be a heart attack.

Parents of fellow students, friends and school officials all praised Rumer’s quick thinking and action.