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New monument honors victims of 1938 bus crash

New monument honors victims of 1938 bus crash

(Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)


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SOUTH JORDAN (AP) — South Jordan has unveiled a new monument honoring 24 people who died when a train plowed into a school bus 75 years ago.

About 200 people attended a ceremony Monday to dedicate the new marble obelisk at Heritage Park.

The crash happened during a blizzard on Dec. 1, 1938. A bus driver stopped in front of railroad tracks in South Jordan and checked, but couldn't see the oncoming train and proceeded onto the tracks.

The engineer was unable to stop, and the crash killed 23 students and the bus driver. Fifteen people survived.

All 39 names appear on the monument.

"Because of that accident, we saw an outflow of national safety standards for school bus traffic," Historic Preservation Committee Chair Richard McMullin told the South Valley Journal. "Laws were enacted that required buses to stop at all railroad crossings and to open the doors to hear if there is an approaching train."

The accident helped spark new safety measures nationwide, including more crossing arms and rules requiring bus drivers to stop at railroad tracks to check for trains.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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