A horrific bus crash has killed four people and left more than 40 others injured. The fatal bus crash occurred Saturday on US-74 near Rockingham, North Carolina.
According to law enforcement reports the Ramah Juco Academy football team from Rock Hill. S.C., and also students from Clinton College, were traveling to the University of God’s Chosen in Fayetteville, N.C. Police say there were 46 people total on the bus when it crashed.
As the bus was traveling along Interstate 74 in Richmond County, a tire blew, causing the bus to strike a guardrail, near mile marker 316. The force of that impact sheared the side wall of the bus almost completely off. Some of the crash’s victims were ejected from the vehicle as it crashed.
The 43-year-old bus driver, as well as a 21-year-old male, a 19-year-old male, and a 10-year-old boy, were all killed in the crash. The other 42 passengers were all taken to four area hospitals with injuries, which authorities describes as ranging from critical to minor.
Some of the players’ parents were following the bus to the football game and witnessed the tragic crash.
Tire blowouts can be dangerous with any vehicle, but when the vehicle is a bus or tractor trailer, it can be even more deadly. National statistics reveal that more than 400 people are killed every year from accidents caused by tire failure. Tread separation is the most common type of tire failure, followed by wheel explosions, ozone cracking, sidewall failures and bead failure.
Another common reason for tire blowouts is improperly inflated tires. Underinflated tires can be just as dangerous as overinflated tires.
Many tire blowout crashes could be avoided if the mass transit or truck transportation company took the time to properly and thoroughly inspect the vehicles before letting them on the road.
The life of a tire should be no more than six years and tires should be consistently inspected to make sure they are not showing signs of wear and tear. However, there are some motor carrier companies that try to cut financial corners and ignore signs of an aging tire, or – just as bad – they replace the worn tire with used or old ones. The results of that decision can be fatal.
Police are still investigating the tragic bus crash. Families of the victims who were killed, as well as the injured victims, should contact an experienced North Carolina personal injury attorney to find out what legal recourse they may have for those eventually deemed responsible for the accident which caused the pain and loss they are enduring.