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      Bus driver called a hero after bus catches fire

      Update, Thursday Jan. 13th 5:10 p.m.:

      A Columbia school bus driver is being called a hero after safely evacuating 28 elementary students from a burning bus on Thursday morning.

      The bus was at the corner of Stadium Boulevard and Providence Road when a fire began in the rear of the bus.

      School bus driver Larry Armstrong safely evacuated the students from the burning bus before using a portable fire extinguisher to get the flames under control. Overheated hydraulic or transmission fluid leaking from the rear engine caused the fire.

      Armstrong said, They did a very good job of evacuating the bus. We TMve been through this before with the drills. They did a very good and I told them so, too.

      Moments after the evacuation, University of Missouri staff opened up the Faurot Field press box area to get the students out of the cold weather. A second school bus brought all of the children safely to their classes.

      Armstrong doesn TMt consider himself a hero. He said he just did what any other trained bus driver would have done. Everyone here at grant elementary school disagrees.

      Students, parents, teachers and administrators all agree that Larry Armstrong is a hero for keeping his kids safe.

      Grant Elementary School Principal Beverly Borduin said, He knew exactly what to do. He kept a really level head. He kept the children safe in a very busy area on providence. He knew just what to do.

      In the spring and fall of every year, First Student school bus drivers and Columbia Public School students train for situations like this. Parents can feel safe knowing they have school bus drivers like Larry Armstrong.

      The majority of the bus fire was extinguished by Armstrong with the remainder being put out by Columbia firefighters.

      The emergency caused some minor traffic delays during the morning rush hour.

      Update, Thursday Jan. 13th 10:29 a.m.: A Columbia Public School bus caught fire about 8:45 a.m. on Thursday morning at the corner of Providence Road and Stadium Boulevard.

      Bus Driver Larry Armstrong safely evacuated 28 Grant Elementary School students before using a portable fire extinguisher to get the flames under control.

      Overheated hydraulic or transmission fluid leaking from the rear engine caused the fire.

      University of Missouri staff opened up the Faurot Field press box area to get the students out of the cold weather.

      A second school bus brought all of the children safely to their classes.

      Columbia Fire Department Captain Eric Hartman said, In the spring and fall of every year, Columbia Public School Bus drivers train for this. They do drills to evacuate school buses in an emergency. That TMs certainly paid off today. We had a significant amount of active fire in the engine compartment of the bus, yet all of the students and the driver remained calm and got the bus evacuated. There were no injuries today.

      The majority of the fire was extinguished by Armstrong with the remainder being put out by Columbia firefighters.

      The school bus fire caused some minor traffic delays during the morning rush hour.

      Original Story: A Columbia School bus driver is being called a hero after safely evacuating 28 elementary students from a burning bus Thursday morning.

      The bus was at Stadium and Providence when a fire began in the rear of the bus. The students were on their way to Grant Elementary shortly after 8:00 a.m.

      Driver Larry Armstrong pulled over and evacuated the bus.

      Because of the extreme cold, the University of Missouri allowed the students to stay in the Faurot Field press box until a replacement bus could pick them up.

      The district says the fire in the bus was caused by leaking hydraulic fluid near the bus's engine.

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