SOUTH JORDAN — An 8-year-old girl was in extremely critical condition after being hit by a school bus on her way home from school Wednesday afternoon.

A bus heading south on 4000 West pulled to the side of the road near 10600 South, and the girl disembarked. While attempting to cross 4000 West, the girl was struck by another school bus, according to South Jordan Police Sgt. Sam Winkler.

"For reasons unknown at this point … there was another Jordan School District bus going southbound also that didn't see this girl and struck her," Winkler said.

The girl was taken to Intermountain Medical Center and later transported via helicopter to Primary Children's Hospital, where she underwent surgery. She was still in extremely critical condition from head injuries Wednesday evening, Winkler said.

Sarat Rimal, whose daughter attends Welby Elementary School, said the accident was a tragedy felt by many parents.

"Our hearts reach out to them," he said. "Of course, it's in our neighborhood. We feel really bad for them."

Jordan School District spokeswoman Sandy Riesgraf echoed Rimal's sentiments.

"This is very, very sad," she said. "It saddens us to see something like this happen."

Police were still investigating whether a stop sign was being used on the side of the bus from which the girl disembarked. Police were speaking with witnesses, many of whom were children, to better understand what happened.

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Authorities said grief counselors will be available Thursday at Welby Elementary as there were children on the buses when the accident happened.

"Obviously, they're quite traumatized," Winkler said.

Contributing: Andrew Adams

Email: mjacobsen@deseretnews.com