VIDEO: A Columbus County school bus caught on fire Wednesday afternoon on Chadbourn Highway near the Walgreens drug store. Hal Lowder with emergency management says the bus was headed to get maintenance on it when it started smoking. Lowder says there were no students on the bus at the time, and the driver was able to get out safely. The fire reportedly started near the engine compartment and quickly spread to the passenger area. Video shared with WWAY shows thick, black smoke and flames spewing from the bus. Whiteville firefighters arrived just before 5 p.m. and extinguished the fire. The bus was a total loss.