HACIENDA HEIGHTS – A case that was under investigation for almost 1 year showed that the FedEx truck driver was at fault and caused the accident with a tour bus in which dozens of Los Angeles-area high school students were travelling, from which 10 died.
Silverado Stages Inc. operated tour bus and a FedEx tractor-trailer combination vehicle collided at about 5:40 p.m. along I-5 in Orland. The incident happened on 10th of April 2014, told CHP Officers.
According to CHP Sgt. Nathan Parsons, 32-year-old Tim Evans was behind the wheel of the truck who made an unsafe turn while travelling south on the freeway, causing the FedEx tractor-trailer to travel across the grass median at a “shallow angle” and strike a northbound Nissan and the bus without any proof of turning or braking. Parsons added, “We’re not able to determine whether he fell asleep or not. He had no evasive maneuvers during the collision. So, no braking, no indication of steering to turn the truck out of its direct path”. According to him, he cannot say whether Evans was negligent or overworked. He also said, “He had sufficient time off. He was an on-call. That day, he was working approximately eight hours at the time of the collision. But he had had between eight and 10 hours of sleep the night before”.
Investigators also said after the long investigation, it was found that none of the drivers were using cell phones or had consumed drugs or alcohol.
43 high school students and 3 adult chaperones were travelling in the bus that was going from Los Angeles to Arcata for a tour of Humboldt University when the bus was hit by the FedEx tractor-trailer.
A 1 paged document was issued by the National Transportation Safety Board officials on 25th of April 2014 that explained a FedEx-operated 2007 Volvo truck tractor, which hauled two 28-foot trailers, was going in the right lane of the southbound I-5 when it veered into the 58-foot-wide median.
According to officials, the truck drove through a line of buses, entered the northbound traffic lanes, and clipped the rear of a 2013 Nissan Altima four-door in which 2 individuals were travelling. The occupants of the Nissan sustained non-life threatening injuries.
The FedEx truck then collided with the tour bus and forced both vehicles into the east side of the highway, and a post-crash fire consumed both vehicles as shown by the report.
10 individuals died and 39 sustained serious injuries in the accident which left a devastating impact on the victims’ family members and communities.
A negligence suit is seeking the amount of $100 million in damages and named the estate of the FedEx driver and motor coach operator Silverado Stages as defendants.
Jim McCluskey, company spokesman for FedEx said, “Our heartfelt sympathy remains with everyone affected by this accident. FedEx Freight cooperated fully with federal and state agencies during their respective investigations, and will carefully review the CHP report. However, we will reserve comment until the NTSB has also completed its work, and finalizes and releases its findings.”
Factors like mechanical, environmental and human factors that were involved in the accident were closely investigated by CHP’s Northern Division Multidisciplinary Accident Investigation Team.
News Source: LosAngeles.CBSlocal.com