Driving While Sleepy Caused Last Year's Major Bus Crash
Last year, it seemed as though not a day went by when we didn't hear about some kind of major accident involving a commuter bus in the New England area. Nowadays, given the oil and natural gas boom in Texas, we hear more about Eagle Ford Shale accidents involving 18-wheelers than we do about buses.
But the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has just issued its report today about the bus crash that happened on March 12, 2011, on a return trip from a casino in Connecticut to New York City's Chinatown.
As Ken Schachter reports for Newsday New York, an NTSB member said (somewhat melodramatically): "The passengers, who were returning from a casino trip, had planned to gamble, but not with their lives."
The NTSB investigation found that the driver was likely fatigued and that the bus had been going 78 miles per hour at the time of the crash, when the driver is thought to have fallen asleep and hit a guardrail. 15 passengers lost their lives.
Falling asleep or driving while fatigued is a recurring theme here in Texas. Oil and gas workers, including professional drivers and sometime-drivers, routinely work long shifts and then drive somewhere else afterwards, causing fatal accidents.
Source: NTSB blames driver fatigue, speed for fatal I-95 bus crash