Five People Lose Their Lives In Semi vs. Bus Collision in Rushville

By Benjamin Cox on March 11, 2024 at 7:21pm

Five people died, including 3 preschoolers, when a semi and a school bus collided on the west side of Rushville around midday today.

According to the Illinois State Police, around 11:30 this morning, a Schuyler-Industry school bus and a semi truck hauling sand collided on U.S. Route 24 at Parkview Road.

A preliminary investigation indicates that the school bus was traveling eastbound on Route 24, and for an unknown reason, crossed over into the westbound lanes in front of the semi truck that was traveling westbound. Upon colliding, both vehicles burst into flames.

The Rushville Fire Department and the Schuyler County Fire Protection District, Schuyler Ambulance, Rushville Police, and the Schuyler County Sheriff’s Department all responded to the scene.

Schuyler County Sheriff Bill Redshaw says that events like today are simply tragic for small communities like Rushville: “There’s not many words that can be said at this time, especially to the families. Schuyler County is a small county and a small community. Rushville, Illinois is a close-knit family. When you have loss of life like this, it’s devastating to that family. Our prayers go out to the families. I do know that myself and the Chief Deputy [Jeff Boyd], Rushville City Police, and all those first repsonders who got there is something that we don’t want to see ever or have to deal with. We appreciate the Illinois State Police who came and took over the investigation.”

ISP Troop 6 Captain Jody Huffman gave condolences to the families of those lost in the crash during a press conference this afternoon at the Schuyler County Fire Protection District Firehouse: “I first want to recognize the tremendous pain that the parents, families, and loved ones are experiencing right now. No one should have to go through this horrible situation, and I would ask that the media give the families some grace.”

Schuyler County Coroner Terry Millslagle says that all families of the victims have been contacted. The bodies of the deceased were taken to Springfield for an examination, with final information to be released at a later date. The Schuyler County Coroner’s Office later identified the deceased as follows:

David Coufal, 72-year-old male from Browning, IL

Angela Spiker, 57-year-old female from Rushville, IL

Maria Miller, 5-year-old female from Rushville, IL

Andrew Miller, 3-year-old male from Rushville, IL

Noah Driscoll, 3-year-old male from Rushville, IL

The administration from the City of Rushville has asked for the community at large to fly their flags at half staff tomorrow to pay respects to those who lost their life in the crash, or If you do not have a flag, please leave your porch light on to show your support. Several area businesses have offered services or fundraisers to help support the families.