An 81-year-old Winston-Salem school bus driver has been cited for causing an accident that sent the driver of the other vehicle to the hospital for treatment of injuries sustained in the crash.
The crash occurred on Cherry Street near Polo Road at approximately 7:00 a.m. According to police, the school bus was traveling north on Cherry Street, when the driver attempted to take a left turn onto Polo. He crashed into a pickup that was traveling south on Cherry.
The two vehicles became stuck together and the impact crushed the driver-side door on the pickup, trapping the driver. The truck then caught fire. Officers who arrived at the scene attempted to put out the fire and free the driver, however, because of the way the vehicles were stuck, they were unable to get the man out. A passing tow-truck driver stopped and used his tow chain and truck to pull the school bus and pickup apart, allowing the officers to get the victim out of the truck.
The victim was transported to a local hospital for treatment. There were two students on the bus at the time of the crash, but police say neither child was injured. The bus driver was charged with failure to yield the right of way. He has been driving with the school district since 2012 and police say this is the second accident he was involved in with the past year. He was not cited in the prior accident.
Although police did not give a reason why the school bus driver may have turned when he did not have the right of way to do so, the age of the driver may have played a part in the accident. It has been well-documented that as we age, there are both physical and cognitive changes that often hinder our driving ability. These changes can affect vision, as well as a delay in reaction time. Routine driving situations, such as taking a turn or changing lanes, can cause an elderly driver to suddenly become confused, which can lead to a crash.If you or someone in your family has been injured in an accident which was caused by an elderly driver, you should contact an experienced Virginia personal injury attorney to discuss what legal recourse you may have against the driver for your pain and loss.