A devastating crash on I-81 in the early morning of November 6 closed southbound lanes for three hours and sent over two dozen people to local hospitals. The car accident, which is still being investigated by New York authorities, involved a bus and a tractor-trailer as well as the initial car. The driver of the car is facing DUI charges associated with the accident.
According to authorities, the bus — which was carrying some 52 passengers — was headed south when an accident happened ahead of it. A car, reputedly driven by a 36-year-old man believed to be intoxicated, crashed into a guard rail. The bus struck the car and then a tractor-trailer, which had parked so that its driver could offer aid to the car’s driver.
In all, 27 people on board the bus were injured, including the bus driver, who had to be cut out of the vehicle over the course of several hours. The driver was the most seriously injured and was listed as being in critical condition, while the injured passengers all suffered minor injuries. The driver of the car is in custody awaiting a criminal trial.
If it can be proved that the driver of the car was intoxicated, and that his intoxication contributed to the car accident that caused the bus to crash, the driver could face serious criminal repercussions. In addition, he could also face a slew of personal injury lawsuits, which all injured parties on board the bus would be allowed under New York law to file. The success of these suits is not contingent upon the outcome of a criminal case.
Source: chron.com, “New York interstate 3-vehicle crash leaves 27 hurt”, Nov. 6, 2014