Pol Capt Kalayani Thapho, a duty officer at Muang Phitsanulok police station, said the pickup truck slammed into the back of the school bus, which was making a U-turn on the Phitsanulok-Sukhothai road.
Three of the 17 injured students were seriously hurt and they were taken to hospital.
Veerapong Chaisungnern, one of the students going to school on the bus, told police that he was talking to his friends when the collision happened. The impact was severe and many students were seen bleeding, the boy said.
Wanchai Sanohwatee, the pickup truck driver, aged 34, was delivering chickens to shops in the area. He was driving fast and could not hit the brakes in time as his vehicle approached the school bus, and could not avoid it, police said.
Mr Wanchai was also injured in the collision.
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