Survivor Describes Bus Fire

9-26-05 - One flat bus tire brought grumbles from the 37 nursing home patients fleeing Houston in anticipation of Hurricane Rita. When Edna Briant heard a rumble and the driver stopped a second time, it wasn't another flat.

Briant, 87, sat two rows behind the driver.

"All of a sudden, he got out of the chair and he pushed my legs over and he's looking underneath" to the floor of the bus, she said. After the driver talked to the six aides on the bus, the passengers were ordered off and onto the shoulder of Interstate 45.

An aide rescued Briant by throwing her "on her shoulder or something," quickly putting her down on the ground, and going back for more patients.

"I couldn't move, and I said, 'Please God, don't let my back be broken," Briant said. "I said, 'Get Claire!"