RIVERTON (WNE) — An Arapahoe man died Tuesday night after driving his vehicle into the back of a school bus south of Riverton, officials said Wednesday.
No one else was seriously injured in the crash, but there were students on the bus, eight of whom suffered minor injuries, as did their driver, according to reports.
All were treated and released from local hospitals Tuesday evening.
The man who rear-ended the bus, Merlin George Black, 44, of Arapahoe, was pronounced dead at about 9:15 p.m. Tuesday after being transported to a local hospital, according to reports.
The crash took place at about 8:35 p.m. Tuesday at the traffic light on Wyoming Highway 789 and Rendezvous Road.
Wyoming Highway Patrol Lt. Travis Hauser said the southbound school bus, which was carrying the Lander Middle School football team home from a game in Worland, was stopped at the light when Black's Ford Escape "smashed right into the back of them."
"There was no sign of braking or trying to swerve out of the way or anything," Hauser said. "He just ran right into the back of them."
Black was not ejected from the vehicle and was wearing a seatbelt, but the shoulder strap was tucked underneath his armpit, Hauser said.
He noted that investigators found open containers of alcohol on the driver's side floorboard of Black's vehicle.
"We do think alcohol was involved," Hauser said, adding that speed may have been a contributing factor as well.