Twenty-one people were injured when two school buses from Rowe Elementary School in Chicago collided on Chicago Avenue just south of Davis Street in Evanston shortly after 11 o’clock this morning.

Twenty children and one adult were transported to three local hospitals by paramedics from Evanston and several nearby suburbs.

The two buses had been traveling northbound on Chicago Avenue one behind the other, when the trailing bus struck the rear of the lead bus.

Both buses bore markings from the Jewel’s Bus Company, which has offices at 1035 West 111th Street  on Chicago’s south side.

City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz, in an e-mail message, said about 50 people were on the two buses, most of them middle-school age children. He said fire officials believed that the injuries the victims suffered were generally minor.

Injured bus passengers were covered with blankets on the sidewalk in front of the Heil & Heil insurance office on Chicago Avenue as they waited for ambulances from Evanston and suburbs as far away as Glencoe to transport them to local hospitals.

The victims were taken to St. Francis, Evanston and Skokie hospitals.

Rowe Elementary is operated by the Northwestern University Settlement, and the students were reportedly on a field trip to the NU campus in Evanston at the time of the accident.

A city news release says the uninjured children were transferred to other buses to continue their field trip.

The accident scene was cleared away and traffic was being allowed to move again on Chicago Avenue by about 12:40 p.m.

Six of the students who were taken to St. Francis Hospital ended up with something extra. The hospital was celebrating EMS Week today with a cookout on the hospital lawn near the emergency room to honor paramedics and other first responders.

And after the youngsters were treated at the emergency room and hospital officals got permission from their teachers, the students got to join the cookout event for hamburgers and hotdogs and cake and cookies.

St. Francis officials say in all 10 students were treated there and two remained hospitalized as of mid-afternoon.

Top: Paramedics lift one of the injured bus passengers onto a stretcher to be taken to the hospital.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. Waiting for the robo calls…

    C'mon! This is the third or fourth "major incident" since the McDonalds shooting and I have not received a single ROBO call notifying me. What gives? I need info! 

    1. No RoboCall Necessary, These Kids Were Not Locals

      As the accident victims were all from Chicago, it's unlikely any Evanston residents were directly affected.  Thus, no robo call was necessary.  But it makes you wonder about the need for seatbelts and soft padded seat backs (or multiple air bags) in school buses.  And professional bus drivers who allegedly tailgate.

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