NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Several students were hurt after officials said a firecracker was set off on a school bus Tuesday morning in Brooklyn.
Just before 7:30 a.m., emergency crews responded to a smoke condition on the bus at the intersection of Ocean Avenue and Dorchester Road in Ditmas Park.
Department of Education spokeswoman Marge Feinberg said the bus company reported that one or two children set off a firecracker on the bus.
“First it lit up in the back, then blew up in the middle where I was sitting,” student Amari Bhola told CBS 2’s Diane Macedo. “It just blew up into fumes and it started to stink in the bus a lot. It was really green.”
Feinberg said the bus was carrying students who attend the Brooklyn Dreams Charter School on Coney Island Avenue. About 44 students were on the bus at the time of the incident.
Amari said he wasn’t scared, but others were.
“They were kind of screaming,” he said. “They said it stinks a lot and they kept asking, ‘Who did this? Why would you do this?'”
Amari’s mother Linda Bhola said she rushed to the scene as soon as she heard the news.
“They called me and told me there was a situation on the bus. I said ‘what situation?’ They said something exploded,” she said. “I said, ‘wow that’s dangerous.'”
She said her son had his asthma inhaler with him and was OK, but not all the kids were so lucky.
“Some children complained of shortness of breath and asthma attacks and teary eyes,” said Dr. Dario Gonzalez with the Fire Dept. Office of Medical Affairs.
In all, 15 students suffered minor injuries and one student was seriously hurt. Authorities said 11 were taken to area hospitals and five were treated at the scene.
The remaining students were screened and sent back to school.
No word yet on who set off the firecracker or if they’ll face any disciplinary action.
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