Bus driver had fatal on--the--job crash before Dallas accident

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Texas investigators are searching for clues that would explain why a driver lost control of a casino-bound charter bus. The Irving accident sent the driver and 44 elderly passengers to the hospital. The remaining two passengers, 69-and 81-year-old women, died in the single-vehicle accident.

High-speed truck accidents can be just as violent as bus collisions. The difference is trucks don't carry the human cargo that tour buses do. A passenger bus that smashes into a median - the way authorities said the tour bus did - can cause dozens of permanently disabling injuries and instant deaths.

The 65-year-old bus driver was hospitalized with three fractured ribs. The man's wife said the intensive care patient remembers little about the crash.

Investigators want to interview the veteran driver and officials with the Mansfield bus company that employs him, Cardinal Coach Lines Inc. Authorities cautioned that an accident report would not be available for some time because of the numerous victims and agencies involved.

This is not the driver's first fatal bus accident. The man was working for Central West Motor Stages Inc. 15 years ago when the bus he drove struck a pedestrian. A 22-year-old man was killed while helping victims from a separate accident.

No criminal charges were filed, but two liability lawsuits were. A bus passenger's personal injury case ended with a settlement. A jury in a wrongful death claim faulted the employer for hiring an "incompetent" driver.

No damages were awarded because the jury also found the victim responsible for the accident. State investigators said the 1998 pedestrian tragedy would not play a role in the current investigation.

In accidents such as these, the victims and their families could receive compensation through a civil suit against those who were negligent. The victims could file claims for personal injury, pain and suffering, wrongful death and more. An attorney experienced in vehicle accidents would be able to provide all of the options available.

Source: huffingtonpost.com, "Driver in Texas bus wreck also drove in '98 crash," Danny Robbins, April 12, 2013