While much of the country was tuned into the Super Bowl yesterday evening, something more serious was occurring just east of Los Angeles. At about 6:30, a tour bus filled with passengers got into a crash at an especially hazardous stretch of road. It is a mountainous area, which contributed to the grave result of the accident.
So far, eight passengers are confirmed dead, but authorities suggest that the death toll is going to rise. This morning, CNN reports that not all bodies have been removed from the severely damaged tour bus. More deceased victims are likely inside.
It is still early in the investigation of the fatal tour bus accident. The driver of the bus survived and is at the center of the investigation. Officials will need to determine what led to the deadly crash. Was the driver impaired? Was the driver speeding? Was he driving while distracted? Was it an accident caused by driver fatigue? These are just some matters that will need to be evaluated.
Commercial drivers and their employers must abide by specific driving safety rules. Drivers, for example, can only work so many hours before they are required to get some rest. Failing to follow that guideline puts overly tired -- sometimes sleeping -- drivers behind the wheel of a bus. Too many lives depend on a commercial driver for that sort of negligence to occur.
Thus far, however, it is important to note that investigators have not yet identified the cause of the crash. Much of the focus now remains on getting all victims out of the wrecked bus and treating the more than 42 passengers who were injured in the accident. We will provide an updated report as more information becomes available.
Our San Bernardino bus accident lawyers can help victims of accidents or families who have needlessly lost loved ones to driver negligence or the negligence of a common carrier company.
Source: CNN, "Death toll expected to rise in California tour bus crash," Paul Vercammen, Feb. 4, 2013