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Hall sheriff’s deputies involved in wreck

Passengers in other car injured but released from hospital

POSTED: July 8, 2011 11:13 p.m.

A Memorial Park Funeral Home bus carrying more then 20 Hall County Sheriff's Office deputies Thursday was involved in a wreck on Interstate 85.

The bus had been loaned to the department's honor guard to attend a funeral for the sheriff of Spalding County, according to Billy Hendrix, Memorial Park Funeral Home vice president of operations and public relations.

No one on the bus was injured, but two people in the other vehicle were taken to the hospital, treated and released, Hall County Sheriff's Office Col. Jeff Strickland said.

Hendrix said he's still waiting on an official police report, but initial signs show a truck merged over a double white line into the HOV lane in front of the bus.

"Then traffic started to slow ahead, and that truck immediately slammed on its brakes, causing the bus to rear-end it," he said. "We have full confidence and trust in (the sheriff's office). I don't feel in anyway they did anything that we wouldn't have done."

DeKalb County Police Department officials did not return calls requesting information about the incident.

Hendrix said the deputy driving was certified to operate the 47-passenger bus, and he expects insurance to cover the damages.

The bus is typically used for public relations purposes and is loaned to various organizations at no cost as a way of giving back to the community, Hendrix said.



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