'Arrogant' school bus driver, 53, who got his vehicle stranded in floodwater with 23 children on board is jailed for a year

Mail Online | 3/28/2018 | Alexander Robertson For Mailonline
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A school bus driver who stranded his vehicle in floodwater with 23 children on board has been jailed for 12 months.

Former soldier Graham Jones, 53, told York Crown Court he made a 'genuine mistake' when he drove the children, aged between 11 and 18, into floods.

Road - Signs - Bus - Water - Passengers

The 53-year-old passed two road closed signs, leaving the bus stuck in thigh-deep water, with passengers having to be rescued by firefighters in North Yorkshire.

A jury found him guilty of dangerous driving on Friday after deliberating for about an hour.

Judge - Paul - Batty - QC - Jones

Judge Paul Batty QC told Jones that he did not understand why he had not pleaded guilty to the offence given the overwhelming evidence against him.

The judge told him he displayed 'vaunted arrogance' in the witness box as he tried to explain to the jury why he took the schoolchildren from the village of Newton-on-Ouse, near York, through one flooded area of Tollerton Lane and then into an even deeper stretch, which the judge described as 'an expanse of water as far as the eye could see'.

Judge - Batty - 'God - Course - Happened

Judge Batty said: 'God knows why you drove through and, of course, the inevitable happened.'

He said: 'God knows what the children were thinking about as this was happening.'

Judge - Batty - Jones - Appreciation - Danger

Judge Batty told Jones he showed no appreciation of the danger he put the children in and 'the potentially devastating consequences that could have occurred because of your dangerous, your reckless act'.

He said: 'This was an extremely bad case of dangerous driving. The consequences that could have followed simply do not bear thinking about.'

Jones - Jury - Men - Women - Section

Jones told the jury of seven men and five women that he went through the first section of floodwater on January 5 because he thought it was shallow enough not to cause him any problems.

But he said that when he entered the second section, he realised water was coming...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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