Bus plunge stories are a nickname for a journalistic practice of reporting bus mishaps in short articles that describe the vehicle as "plunging" from a bridge or hillside road. The phenomenon has been noted in The New York Times, which once published as many as 14 "bus plunge" stories per year in its foreign news section.
The stories exist not only because of their perceived newsworthiness but because they could be reduced to a few lines and used to fill gaps in the page layout. Further, the words "bus" and "plunge" are short, and can be used in one-column headlines within the narrow, eight-column format that was prevalent in newspapers through the first half of the 20th century.
The adoption of computerized layout tools has reduced the need for such filler stories, but news wires continue to carry them.
- "Miracle escape in bus plunge". Thisislocallondon.co.uk. 2001-01-03. Archived from the original on 2014-01-02. Retrieved 2014-01-02.
- "Collection of Bus Plunge articles". Users.lmi.net. Archived from the original on 2014-01-01. Retrieved 2014-01-02.
- Shafer, Jack (13 November 2006). "The rise and fall of the "bus plunge" story". Slate Magazine. Slate.com. Archived from the original on 9 November 2012. Retrieved 13 April 2013.