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5 children taken to hospital following Orange County van crash

A van shuttling children to an after-school activity in Dana Point, California, crashed into a tree, sending five children to the hospital.

The children are between ages 9 and 12. Four other children were riding in the van at the time of the accident and received minor injuries, according to the Orange County Fire Authority.

The single-car crash happened on a steep street. A witness told a local television station that after the crash, the driver told her the vehicle's brakes failed. The driver also reportedly told the witness that she aimed for a smaller tree to help her stop.

A reconstruction team was working to determine the cause of the crash.

All the children who were in the van at the time of the crash reportedly were wearing seat belts.

The driver was not hurt.

A witness said she heard the sound of an attempt to brake.

"There was definitely screeching, over and over again," she said.

Another witness said she thought the driver exercised great care in trying to stop the van safely.

"She was mostly concerned with keeping it on the road as she came down the hill," a Dana Point resident told the Orange County Register. "She was wailing on the horn."

The Dana Point police chief reported that all the children who went to the hospital were alert. She said they were en route to Baby Beach at the time of the crash. At the crash site, a pile of surfboards that could have been attached to the top of the van was evident on the ground.

We sign up our children for after-school outings to keep them safe and occupied. When a crash like this one occurs, our first concern is for our kids. Once the kids have recuperated from any injuries, the parents could consult with an attorney experienced in car accident cases to discuss how to recoup any money paid for hospital bills.

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