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Winona County bus driver cited for DWI, crashes into tree with kids aboard

Posted by: Curt Brown Updated: January 29, 2014 - 4:32 PM

The school bus driver was swaying with poor balance and smelling of alcohol when Winona County authorities responded to a crash. The bus, with five children on board, had gone off the wrong side of Fern Valley Road near Altura and crashed into trees.

Karl A. Herber, 54, of Rollingstone, Minn., was charged with three counts of drunken driving and child endangerment after registering a .09 blood-alcohol level when tested more than two hours after the crash Tuesday afternoon, Winona County Chief Deputy Ron Ganrude said.

None of the children were injured and they'd been picked up by another bus when authorities arrived. Herber had already called a tow truck by the time police arrived at 4:44 p.m. The riders ranged from kindergarten to fifth grade from the Lewiston-Altura Schools in southeastern Minnesota.

The school district's superintendent said distirct policy requires drivers have no trace of alcohol in their systems.

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