Three people died tragically early this morning, and at least 20 others were injured when a Greyhound bus traveling from Indianapolis to St. Louis slammed into three 18-wheelers parked off of Interstate 70 West in southern Illinois.
Greyhound Bus Sideswiped Trucks at Silver Lake Rest Area
The horrific crash occurred shortly before 2:00 a.m., as the Greyhound headed west on I-70 in Madison County, just 30 miles from downtown St. Louis.
According to the Illinois State Police, the bus veered off the roadway, sideswiping three tractor-trailers parked on a long exit ramp leading to the Silver Lake rest area. The force of the collision caused the bus roof to crumble and sheared off a portion of its right-side panel, leaving eight rows of seats exposed.
“I was sleeping, and I kind of woke up in the air, getting thrown around in there,” one of the truck drivers recalled, according to NBC-6 in Chicago.
Fortunately, the trucker wasn’t hurt and even managed to assist those escaping the bus.
“We pulled the people out of the bus, and then the bus tires started to catch fire, so I ran and got my extinguisher,” he continued.
13 Passengers, Greyhound Bus Driver Transferred to Area Hospitals
Three people, all Greyhound passengers, were pronounced dead at the scene.
Four injured survivors were airlifted to the hospital via medical helicopter and ten others were transferred by ambulance.
None of the crash victims have been identified, and authorities have yet to disclose the nature of their injuries or comment on the condition of those taken to the hospital. However, Greyhound has acknowledged that its driver was hurt in the accident.
‘We can confirm an incident occurred this morning involving Greyhound schedule number 1675 traveling from Indianapolis to St. Louis. Multiple passengers, including our driver, have been transported to the hospital,” the company said in a statement. “Our primary concern is ensuring we care for our passengers and driver at this time. We are working closely with local authorities and a relief bus is on the way for passengers.”
Did Driver Fatigue Contribute to the Fatal Greyhound Bus Crash?
Neither the media nor the investigating state troopers have identified the cause of the crash.
However, one of the bus’s passengers told the St. Louis Dispatch that he felt the bus shake as it passed over rumble strips before the crash, like the driver drifted off to sleep.
“When I woke up, like, I flew forward,” he said. “So then when I raised up, the side of the bus opened up like a can opener.”
Based on these accounts and the time and nature of the crash, fatigue is a very likely contributor to this morning’s fatal Greyhound bus crash.
In fact, Greyhound itself is well aware that drivers operating between the hours of 12:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. are substantially more likely to cause a fatigue-related crash.
The company even retained an outside fatigue consultant called Alertness Solutions, back in 2010, to study the effect of inverted (constantly changing) sleep schedules on its drivers.
In addition to concluding that “regular night run” drivers (those who always drive at night) were constantly fatigued and far more likely to be involved in fatigue-related crashes, Alertness Solutions also recommended that Greyhound reevaluate its dispatch methods, noting that “extra board” drivers (those who are on call and can be dispatched to drive at any time) had irregular sleep schedules that increased their risk of an accident.
Our Greyhound Bus Accident Lawyers Have Won the Largest Verdicts and Settlements in Greyhound’s History
Our Undefeated Bus Accident Attorneys have handled more cases and recovered more money from Greyhound than any other law firm in the United States.
Over the last 10 years alone, we’ve successfully represented hundreds of clients across the United States following serious and fatal Greyhound bus crashes, winning the largest verdicts and settlements in the company’s history.
These recoveries include a $18.5 million verdict, a $11 million settlement, and a $9 million settlement on behalf of several passengers who were injured after a Greyhound driver fell asleep at the wheel.
Our Greyhound Accident Lawyers also obtained the first-ever court-ordered overnight sleep study of a Greyhound driver, confirming that he was suffering from severe Obstructive Sleep Apnea – and therefore, should not have been behind the wheel – when he veered off the highway and flipped the bus around 2 am. As Greyhound was well aware before the crash, Obstructive Sleep Apnea makes driver at least 7 times more likely to cause a fatigue-related crash.
Contact Our Undefeated Greyhound Bus Accident Lawyers for a Free Consultation at
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Our Undefeated Bus Accident Attorneys are investigating the tragic Illinois crash and will post updates as new information becomes available.
You can see one of Ryan Zehl’s recent news interviews about the deadly Greyhound crash by clicking here.
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