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Cause of a deadly bus crash investigation renews concerns

The results of an investigation into the cause of a deadly 2016 bus-big rig crash are now available. The chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board found the reason behind the accident “predictable and preventable.”

For those who ride buses of any type, from RTA buses to motor coaches and school buses, the sobering report expands safety concerns.

The homeward-bound crash

The accident happened in California early on a Sunday in October 2016. A tour bus full of passengers left a casino in Palm Springs and headed back to Los Angeles on the 10 freeway. A little over an hour later, the bus rammed into the back of a tractor-trailer, killing 13 passengers and injuring 30.

What caused the collision

The truck had stopped because of utility work on the highway up ahead. The driver did not move when the flow of traffic resumed, because he was probably asleep at the wheel: The investigation revealed that he suffered from sleep apnea. The bus driver had been diagnosed with diabetes and apparently also suffered from fatigue when he ran full-speed into the back of the truck.

Other reasons for injury

In addition to fatigue, negligence or carelessness on the part of a bus driver, equipment malfunction can sometimes be the cause of an accident, or it might be a deer that suddenly jumps into the roadway or dangerous weather conditions. There are many possible causes. Buses are large, heavy vehicles, so a crash of any kind can easily result in passenger injury or death, especially in view of the fact that seat belts are not required on most buses.

Calling in experts

In assisting a passenger who is injured in a bus crash, an attorney will arrange for a thorough examination of the incident, employing the help of professional investigators. Recovering damages related to a commercial bus accident can be a somewhat complex process, but the attorney will see that every avenue is open for the victim to receive fair and just compensation for any injuries sustained.