Henry County school officials said a bus that caught fire Monday morning — the first day of school — had passed a state inspection only a week earlier.The engine fire happened in a subdivision on Mitchells Ridge Drive.

Henry County Fire Capt. Sabrina Puckett said firefighters are still determining the cause of the fire. A school spokesman said the investigation was focused on the bus’s electrical system.

There were students from Austin Road Middle and Stockbridge High schools on the bus, bus driver John Wilkins said. He said he noticed smoke coming from under the hood and told everyone to leave.

They got off. They moved back as far as they could move, Wilkins told Channel 2’s Linda Stouffer.

All 22 students and the driver were evacuated and no one was hurt, Puckett said.

Before you knew it, the back doors open and everybody’s leaving, Stockbridge student Deyzha Price said.

Driver trainer Melissa Butcher told Channel 2’s Jim Strickland that the district conducts bus evacuation drills twice per year with students, and the driver receives extensive training.

“We will physically go to every school and teach these children how to get off if this happens … and apparently it’s working,” said Butcher.

Firefighters were able to extinguish the fire. Another bus was sent to get the students to school.

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