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Dozen passengers from Sunday bus crash leave hospital in stable condition

A dozen bus passengers who were taken to Regional Medical Center after a collision on Interstate 20 were released from the hospital in stable condition by Monday morning, an RMC spokeswoman said Monday.

Twelve people were taken to RMC and another three were taken to Citizens Baptist Hospital in Talladega after a wreck around 5 p.m. Sunday near Mile 178 of the interstate.

Oxford Fire chief Gary Sparks said the wreck happened when a transfer truck rear-ended a bus that was headed toward Atlanta. He said the bus carried about 40 people — members of a kids’ dance group that had performed in Jackson, Miss., and were on their way back to Atlanta.

Sparks said the collision rendered the bus inoperable, largely because of overheated brakes that caused a fire shortly after the crash. Passengers who weren’t taken to the hospital were taken to Oxford Civic Center, where they waited to be picked up by bus Sunday night, Sparks said.

The condition of the passengers taken to Citizens Baptist is unclear. Emergency officials responding to the crash didn’t release the names of any passengers, and a spokesperson for the hospital said she could release the condition of the passengers only if she had their names.

Capitol & statewide reporter Tim Lockette: 256-294-4193. On Twitter @TLockette_Star.