PALM SPRINGS, Calif. — A tour bus returning home to Los Angeles from a casino trip plowed into the back of a semitrailer truck on a California highway early Sunday, killing 13 people and injuring 31 others, authorities said. Fantasy springs casino concerts.
A maintenance crew had slowed down traffic on Interstate 10 before the vehicles crashed just north of the desert resort town of Palm Springs, California Highway Patrol Border Division Chief Jim Abele said. The work had gone on for hours without problems, he said.
Abele said the bus carrying 44 passengers was going much faster than the truck, though a trauma surgeon said the injuries he saw indicated it was slowing down at the point of impact.
"The speed of the bus was so significant that the trailer itself entered about 15 feet into the bus," Abele told reporters. "You can see it was a substantial impact."
It was not known if alcohol, drugs or fatigue played a role in the crash about 100 miles east of Los Angeles, but the bus was inspected in April and had no mechanical issues, Abele said. The bus driver was killed and the truck driver received minor injuries.
Fantasy springs casino concerts pitbull
The bus was coming from Red Earth Casino in the unincorporated community of Thermal and was about 35 miles into its 135-mile trip back to Los Angeles.
Highway Patrol officers had been slowing traffic to allow Southern California Edison workers to string wires across the freeway, Abele said.
Passengers told officials that most people were asleep when the crash occurred at 5:17 a.m. Abele said it appeared the 1996 bus didn't have seat belts and likely didn't have a black box, which newer vehicles feature.
Fourteen patients were sent to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, the area's only trauma center. Five were admitted in critical condition but were stable and in intensive care by Sunday afternoon, said Dr. Ricard Townsend, a trauma surgeon. Seven others had been released.
Many suffered facial injuries, a telltale sign they were not wearing seat belts, he said. He called the injuries unusual for this type of crash.
"When you usually see someone involved in a high-speed motor vehicle crash, the thing that you see are big-time broken bones. … It seemed as though most of the victims were unrestrained and were therefore flown through the air and ended up sustaining facial trauma," Townsend said.
The injuries indicate the bus was slowing down when it struck, Townsend said.
A Highway Patrol officer told the Desert Sun newspaper in Palm Springs earlier Sunday that the driver was one of the owners of a tour bus company, USA Holiday, based near Los Angeles. The company has one vehicle and one driver, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
Palm springs casino concerts 2014
A phone message left for the company was not returned. A Facebook message from USA Holiday said it did not have much information on the crash.
Tour bus slams into truck on slowed-down highway, killing 13 10/23/16 [Last modified: Sunday, October 23, 2016 11:19pm]