Harley Hoyt was one of dozens of Southern California high school students on board a charter bus headed for Humboldt State University on Thursday when they were struck head-on by a FedEx truck.
Hoyt was sitting in the back of the bus and said he didn’t see the truck coming.
According to Hoyt, the first sign of trouble was the sudden sound of screams coming from students seated up front.
“Once we hit the impact, the front of the bus was on fire, and smoke started coming through the whole bus,” Hoyt said. “I looked out the window, and the FedEx bus was already on fire, so I was like, okay, we’re going to blow up any second.
He said the scene outside the bus was equally disturbing.
“We all crossed the Interstate-5 and got on the southbound side, and after that, everyone just was laying on the grass,” Hoyt said.
“People were out of it. People were crying. People were pulling their hair. People were screaming,” he said.
CNN contributed to this story.