Girl, 5, dead after school bus crashes into tree in Georgia

HINESVILLE, Ga. -- Authorities say a 5-year-old girl is dead after a school bus left the road and smashed into a tree while carrying children to school in Georgia.

The Georgia State Patrol said in a news release that "charges are pending" in the deadly crash Tuesday morning in Liberty County, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) southwest of Savannah. It said the bus driver and 22 children who were passengers suffered injuries.

Liberty County Public Safety Director Mike Hodges said the driver had the most serious injuries. He said his understanding was that the injured children had "bumps and scrapes and lacerations."

The State Patrol said the bus driver lost control, drove into a ditch and slammed into a tree. No other vehicles were involved in the crash.