When Californians go on vacation, they generally have an expectation of safety when they choose a method of transport. Whether they are traveling by boat, plane or road vehicle, vacationing residents assume that travel companies will be good stewards, providing safe drivers and vehicles for their trip. This is not always the case, however, as scores of vacationers are injured and killed each year because of travel companies’ negligence. Yet another incident of this type occurred in the state in late August, as a tour bus full of travelers crashed after a near-fatal driver error.
Passengers from the tour bus that crashed near Los Angeles, California, on Aug. 22 were pulled from the vehicle one-by-one, with many reportedly in a state of shock after the massive car accident. The collision caused the bus to overturn in the middle of the 210 Freeway in Irwindale, thanks to an inappropriate lane change executed by the vehicle’s driver. Witnesses and bystanders rushed to the passengers’ aid after they saw the violent crash, which left the bus sprawled on its side.
Investigators have determined that the bus driver swerved into another lane of traffic after striking a vehicle while attempting to change lanes. Official reports indicate that five passengers on the bus suffered blunt-force trauma injuries, but news articles did not reveal the extent of their injuries. In all, eight victims were transported to hospital facilities after the injurious crash. In total, 50 people were injured and the road was closed for more than an hour in both directions while crash cleanup and investigation occurred.
Most of the passengers were retirement-age, with responders characterizing them in the 60- to 80-year-old age range. These victims suffered serious pain even from minor injuries because of their relatively advanced age, according to medics on the scene.
www.latimes.com, “Tour bus steered into occupied lane, clipped car before crash” Jason Wells & Joseph Serna, Aug. 23, 2013