A young motorist panicked when he was chased by police and crashed into the side of a school bus at high speed, a court heard yesterday.
Judge John Shand jailed Nathan Sinclair (20) for 12 months at Stafford Crown Court and told him it was "miraculous" that only two children had been hurt when the car embedded itself into the side of the bus in the village of Haughton, Staffordshire.
Sinclair, of Clover Ley, Heath Town, Wolverhampton, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and having no insurance. He was also disqualified from driving for two years.
Judge Shand said: "You bought a motor car that day without insurance and when the police approached you panicked and there was a chase in a built-up area at high speed.
"You overtook in dangerous circumstances going through a red light and it ended with your motor car embedded into the side of the bus. Only two young passengers were injured. It was a tragedy waiting to happen.
" The public would not accept anything but a custodial sentence to send a message out that this type of driving will not be tolerated. The least sentence is 12 months."
Adam Western, prosecuting, said Sinclair drove off at speed when approached by the police and left Stafford doing 60 miles an hour in a 30 mile an hour zone.
"He drove through a red light and forced his way past stationary cars and drove under a motorway bridge into Haughton at 90 miles an hour," he said.
"A bright yellow school bus was stationary and a witness saw his car collide with the bus. The witness said that just before the collision the car was travelling at about 80 miles an hour.
"An 11-year-old boy was thrown from his seat into a plastic panel behind the driver and received injuries to his face.
"A young girl received back injuries. Sinclair ran off and was caught hiding in a nearby graveyard."
Sunit Sandhu, defending, said: "He accepts he should have stopped and that it was a bad piece of driving. He genuinely regrets his actions and the injuries he caused."