The Recent Spate of Bus Accidents

by Ben on September 1, 2012

In early August of this year a 25-year old rookie bus driver who was still in training was behind the wheel of Megabus when a blown tire caused the bus to careen out of control. The bus hit a median strip and slammed into a cement pillar. One person died in the crash and several people were hurt.

The driver, Preston Taylor, said he did everything he could have done to keep the bus from rolling over and possibly injuring more passengers. Officials and investigators from the state police agree that Taylor did all he could do to prevent the bus from crashing. They also agree that Taylor was not at fault and did what he was supposed to do to try to get the bus under control. Taylor received injuries to his face and foot and has had three operations.

On the same day as the crash, a trainer was on the bus observing Taylor. Taylor began driving for Megabus in July of this year and was still in training. The trainer also agreed that Taylor did all he could do to prevent the crash from being worse. There were seventy passengers on the bus. The woman who died was sitting on the upper level of the double deck bus.

Recently, a crash report was released. The report confirmed that the crash was caused by a blown front tire. To date, the bus accident is still being investigated.

The Megabus is a double deck bus and is less stable than single deck buses. The bus was manufactured in Belgium. Since the accident in August, several passengers have launched lawsuits against the bus company. According to the president and chief operating officer, Dale Moser, the bus company has not released any statements or commented about the crash report because of the ongoing investigation. Moser did express deep sorrow for the lady who died and for those who were injured. He also said that the company was cooperating with the investigators.

The recent crash in Chicago marked the fifth fatal crash for Megabus in the past two years. According to officials, three of the accidents were caused by blowouts of tires. Investigators are probing the reason for the tire blowouts. It seems that the double deck buses have too much weight. They cautioned the company to evenly distribute the weight of the passengers and the weight of the cargo on the buses to help prevent further bus accidents of this nature.

Megabus fares are very inexpensive, which makes them very popular. More than ninety cities use Megabus services in the United States and in Canada. The fares are low because Megabus loads passengers at curbside instead of at a bus terminal. This keeps the fares down but puts passengers at risk and increases the chances of bus accidents. Recently, an elderly woman was knocked to the ground and killed by a Megabus that was making a turn.

Earlier this year, twenty-six bus companies were shutdown by the Unites States Department of Transportation due to hazards to public safety, but Megabus was not one of the companies whose operations were put to a stop. Ironically, the Megabus that was involved in the recent bus accident in Chicago had passed inspection.

Preston Taylor, the driver of the Megabus that crashed, says it was a lifelong dream of his to become a bus driver. Also, Taylor said he looks forward to getting back to work.

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