Six people were injured in a San Bernardino County bus accident after a suspected drunk driver in a pickup crashed into the charter bus carrying 23 passengers from the San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino to Los Angeles. According to a news article in the San Bernardino Sun, 32-year-old Vernon Christopher Hernandez ran a red light at the intersection of Victoria Avenue and Mirada Road in San Bernardino the night of June 15, 2009 and slammed into the bus. Hernandez died in the bus crash.
After the initial impact, the bus and truck continued sliding 20 to 30 yards. The bus then crashed into a large block wall. Six passengers on the bus suffered personal injuries and all 23 were pulled through the windows after the bus crashed into the wall, San Bernardino County Fire Department officials said. The Los Angeles-bound charter bus had just picked up the passengers from the casino. Police are apparently still investigating what caused the bus-car accident, but based on the preliminary investigation, they are placing the blame on the driver of the pickup truck. Police say they believe alcohol or drugs may have played a part in this bus collision.
I’m relieved that other than the suspected drunk driver, no one else was seriously hurt or killed in this San Bernardino bus accident. I wish the injured bus passengers the very best for a quick and complete recovery.
According to statistics from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), 278 buses were involved in fatal bus accidents in the United States in 2007. A total of 322 deaths and 15,888 personal injuries occurred nationwide the same year, which involved bus crashes.
In this particular California car-bus accident, based on initial reports, it seems that the deceased driver was responsible for the bus crash. If the preliminary investigation results are accurate, Hernandez was intoxicated and ran a red light. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a violation of California Vehicle Code section 23152. Running a red light is also a serious traffic violation, per California Vehicle Code 21453.
If you have been involved in a bus accident or any type of San Bernardino car accident, it is in your best interest to consult experienced California personal injury attorneys, who will advise you on the most suitable course of action and give you more information about how to protect or pursue your legal rights. Whatever the type of accident you have been involved in, please remember that you would be well-advised not to talk to any insurance agents, sign any papers or enter into a settlement without talking first to a knowledgeable personal injury attorney.