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Curious Mind: Search yields overturned buses in Burley and Jerome

Curious Mind: Search yields overturned buses in Burley and Jerome

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Q: When I was a small boy in the early 1940s I remember my dad taking me to see a Greyhound bus laying on its side on the sharp corner of Idaho Highway 30 north of the Black Bear corner. I never heard if anyone was hurt and wondered if anyone knew more about it.

A: “I did a search of the local newspapers from 1937-52, and found two instances of an accident where a bus was overturned,” Reference and Adult Services Library Jennifer Hills at the Twin Falls Public Library said. “Once in 1940 when a school bus overturned outside of Burley and once in 1947 when a Greyhound bus overturned in the wind near Jerome. I used as many keywords as I could think of but came up empty for an overturned bus on Highway 30 near Buhl.”

According to the Idaho Evening Times on Nov. 26, 1940, a school bus overturned when “A low hanging fog and mist, which turned to ice as it settled on highways and streets, today had spread death, injury and destruction over the Magic Valley and had caused state policemen and officers in various sections to urge that motorists stay off the highways ‘unless the trips are absolutely necessary.’”

The article continued “A spectacular mishap occurred late yesterday afternoon at a point 20 miles east of Burley at the Henry Neilson corner in the Jackson district when a school bus, carrying 12 pupils, skidded from the road and turned over on its side.”

“All 12 of the children, and also the driver whose name was not learned, were slightly injured, most of them suffering cuts and bruises, Cassia county officials reported today.”

Another accident occurred on Sept. 8, 1947. The Times-News reported “Six passengers sustained minor injuries when a Greyhound bus turned over about 4:45 p.m. Sunday on the highway about two and one-half miles north of the rim-to-rim bridge” in Jerome. There were 21 passengers aboard the bus.

“…The weather was bad, with gusty wind whipping across the highway to make it difficult to control a vehicle.” The driver “had just rounded a curve when it skidded off the right side of the highway, following the borrow pit for about 100 feet. The driver brought the bus back on the highway, but the vehicle ‘swapped ends,’ struck a small pile of rocks to the left of the highway and turned over on its right side. Emergency door of the bus was on the top side of the overturned bus and the passengers and driver climbed out through it.”

Have a question? Just ask and we’ll find an answer for you. Email your question to Kimberly Williams Brackett at with “Curious Mind” in the subject line.


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