Soldotna, January 10, 2014—While traveling to the Valdez Invitational, Kenai Central High School and Skyview High School cross-country ski teams were in a bus accident at 11:44 a.m., at mile 55 on the Richardson Highway. Valdez City Schools sent buses to transport students to the elementary school, where a medical triage team assembled to assess every student. Several students were subsequently transported to Providence Valdez Medical Center for further evaluation.
At the accident site cell coverage was minimal, weather conditions were poor. Forty-nine people were on board the bus from KPBSD, in addition to the bus driver. Skyview High School team: 15 students and three adults; from Kenai Central High School: 28 students and three adults. Students and KPBSD staff began arriving in Valdez at approximately 4:00 p.m.
At the time of this media release, students at the hospital were being treated and released, and we are awaiting a full update. All parents and guardians have been contacted.
Due to the circumstances, the two KPBSD teams will not compete in the Valdez Invitational on Saturday; Unique Charters is sending a replacement bus for the teams which plans to leave Valdez and drive back to the central peninsula midday.
“I thank all of the staff from Valdez City Schools, the Valdez Emergency Services, Valdez Police, personnel at the Valdez Hospital, and the Alaska State Troopers for their immediate and professional response to today’s accident,” said Dr. Steve Atwater, superintendent. “The location of the accident made the response difficult, we are thankful that these agencies are so well trained. In addition, thank you to local families who volunteered to bring food to students, and open their homes to parents.”
Pegge Erkeneff | Communications Specialist
Kenai Peninsula Borough School District