Student video reveals drama of school bus fire
UPDATE: A STUDENT on the bus that caught fire on the Bruce Highway has told of hearing 'explosion after explosion' after he and his friends were safely evacuated.
Police recently towed the bus remains from the scene and all northbound lanes of the highway have reopened after being closed for a few hours.
The bus was one of three on its way back to Maroochydore carrying year 10 students who had been attending a careers expo at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
Maroochydore High Student Mason Hope said the driver pulled over after smoke appeared at the back of the bus and the students had evacuated when small explosions were heard.
"We just heard bang after bang and explosion after explosion. It's crazy," he said.
Mason's worried grandmother, Liz Hope, could barely believe it when her 15-year-old grandson called to say he would be home late as "the bus is on fire".
"He told me he had been on the way from a school excursion from the University of the Sunshine Coast when they noticed smoke on the school bus," Ms Hope said.
"He said the teachers very quickly pulled them off the bus, and then it caught fire."
Thankfully no one has been injured in the incident.
There were major disruptions to traffic on the Bruce Highway with traffic unlikely to be flowing again freely until after 3.30pm.
Emergency services had to wait until the bus cooled down before it could be removed.
61 students evacuated from bus
UPDATE: 61 High school students have been evacuated from a school bus which caught fire on the Bruce Highway just after 12.50pm today.
A Queensland Ambulance Spokeswoman said three teachers and one driver were also on board.
She said five students in total were treated by QAS. Two for smoke inhalation, two for anxiety and one for a throat irritation.
Ambulance officers are still on the scene.
EARLIER: IT took six fire crews to put out a bus fire which has closed the Bruce Highway on the Sunshine Coast.
The fire near Ilkley Rd overpass happened about 12.50pm.
It's unclear how many were on the bus at this stage but a Queensland Fire Service spokeswoman said no injuries were reported.
The bus however did spark a small grassfire nearby.
EARLIER: ABOUT 25 TO 30 students have been evacuated from a school bus on the Bruce Highway after it burst into flames a short time ago.
Local Ilkley resident Tony Moore told the Sunshine Coast Daily that the fire broke out at the back of the bus, sending plumes of thick black smoke into the sky.
A handful of teachers quickly evacuated students from the bus and relocated them about half a kilometre away from the fire.
"They are all safe now. They are about half a kilometre up the road.''
Mr Moore said the fire quickly spread to grassland.
He said there were about six firefighting units on the scene, as well as police and ambulance crews.
Mr Moore said the fire was incredible and nothing he expected to see on the Sunshine Coast.
"It's so black you can't even see the bus,'' Mr Moore said.
Mr Moore said the teachers did a great job in quickly getting the students away from the bus and the fire.
He said he did not know which school the bus was from but could only see that the students had navy coloured bottom half of their uniforms.
The northbound lane on the Bruce Highway is currently blocked both ways due to a school bus fire.
EARLIER: A SCHOOL bus has caught fire on the Bruce Highway near Chevallum.
Police were called about 12.50 to the fire south of the Ilkley Rd overpass on the north bound side of the highway.
It is believed the bus has been evacuated and that all children were accounted for.
More to come.