Dozing drivers cause two separate crashes

Keri Thornton | Daily Press

Law enforcement officals said there were no major injuries in a collision on East Downing Street that involved a school bus Tuesday morning.

Two drivers fell asleep at the wheel Tuesday, causing two separate crashes on the same day.

The driver of a Subaru reportedly dozed off as she was traveling on East Downing Street early Tuesday morning. She collided with a Toyota Prius and ultimately collided head-on with a Tahlequah Public Schools bus.

Tahlequah Police Department Detective Bryan Swim said there were approximately 10 children on the bus at the time of the collision.

However, the daughter of the school bus driver posted on Facebook that there were only six children on board.

All involved were taken to the hospital to get checked out. Officers said despite the amount of damage to the vehicles, no serious injuries were reported.

Tahlequah Fire Department personnel were called out to another crash around 1 p.m. on Rice Road, one mile north of Tahlequah.

Denise Drywater, 46, Tahlequah, fell asleep while driving, and her vehicle veered off the roadway, striking a bridge abutment. She was pinned in the vehicle for approximately 20 minutes before she was freed by Tahlequah FD using the "jaws of life."

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol report indicated Drywater was transported by First Flight to St. John's Hospital in Tulsa with head, trunk, internal, arm and leg injuries.

She was in critical condition.

The report said seat belts were equipped but were not in use at the time of the crash.

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