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Simulated school bus crash prepares transportation employees for worst

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THORNTON, Colo. -- It's something you never want to happen, but must be prepared for.

Thornton first responders created a real-life school bus extraction to show hundreds of Colorado school transportation workers how to handle emergency scenarios.

The simulation showed how crews would handle a rescue with 20 victims inside an overturned school bus.

"The important thing is that we get the chance to work here and practice. Also, train these great people that come to the conference to be prepared," said Jeff Genger, emergency preparedness manager for Adams 12 Schools.

Hundreds of school transportation employees from across the state watched to see how to react when the unthinkable happens.

The demonstration is part of an annual transportation conference partnered with the Adams 12 school district.

Playing the victims were students from Bollman Technical School who are training to be EMTs.

Fire crews first cut through the steel to demonstrate the best way to gain access to the passengers. Then, after stabilizing the bus, they treated and extracted the victims.

"The smell, the sights, the sounds. They get the real feel but they get to sit in bleachers and see it from a back point of view, so they never have to experience it in real life," Genger said.

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