Navajo County students and staff are safe after their school bus caught fire along Interstate 17 north of the Valley late Thursday night.

Arizona Department of Public Safety officials say a bus from the Heber-Overgaard area caught fire just before 10 p.m. along I-17 south of Camp Verde.

Video from the scene showed the bus completely engulfed in flames.

According to a family member who reached out to ABC15, the bus was transporting a varsity football team that was coming home from an away game.

According to the Heber-Overgaard school district calendar, the Thursday night football game was held in Mayer.

Fortunately, no one was injured, but some of the team’s gear and personal belongings were reportedly destroyed in the fire, Ron Tenney, the Superintendent of Heber-Overgaard Unified School District #6, told ABC15.

The incident caused a temporary closure of the highway but it has since reopened.

We spoke with the Mogollon Mustangs offensive coordinator and assistant coach Nolan Porter who said after their 66-0 drubbing of the Mayer High School Wildcats, the bus with about 30 people in it started up a hill on I-17 just outside of the Spring Valley area.

Superintendent Ron Tenny said a few miles into their ride home, students said they heard a pop from the back of the bus. The bus pulled over and everyone got off.

Thats when Coach Porter said it only took a few minutes for smoke to turn into a fire that engulfed the bus.

The team was able to recover some belongings stored under the bus, but Tenny and Porter both said student personal items like headphones, duffel bags even homework were lost in the fire. Porter estimates thousands of dollars in football equipment was also lost.

As of Friday morning, the cause of the fire is unclear. Porter said while the driver of the bus was using the extinguisher, he noticed dangling belt.

While the highway was closed, Mayer High School sent a bus to move the stranded students to a McDonald’s off the highway in Camp Verde. Later, groups of students were taken back to Heber in multiple personal vehicles.

Superintendent Tenny says they do have insurance, but he anticipates waiting over a year to find a replacement bus.

Next Friday, the defending champion Mogollon Mustangs will play in their homecoming game, so the team doesnt have to worry about travel. Tenny said when the team travels the following week, theyll use a caravan of minibuses.

A Gofundme has been set up to help pay for personal belongings the team lost in the fire.