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Monday, May 22, 2006

Bus driver handles medical emergency

A school bus driver was hailed for helping save the life of a student with a blocked airway earlier this month, according to

Mary Miller, director of transportation at Marion, NY Central School District, said that while a district bus was moving along its morning route, a student alerted driver Jim Couperus that another student was struggling to breathe.

Couperus pulled over the bus and radioed the transportation department to request emergency medical help.

Miller’s staff was able to immediately alert Wayne County Advanced Life Support, which has a satellite office in the district’s transportation building. A responder was dispatched to the scene and found that the eighth grader’s airway was completely blocked.

Emergency care was administered, and the student was transported to a local hospital. It was determined that she had had a severe allergic reaction, but she fully recovered.

Miller praised Couperus for his role in saving the student’s life. She said that Couperus’ decisive actions showed that he had been trained well. “His reaction was just applaudable,” she said of Couperus, who has served as a driver at the district for about four years. “He stayed calm and did everything that would be expected of him.”