If school bus driver tried U-turn, there should be homicide charges (Opinion)
In covering the terrible school bus dump truck crash on 80 we began seeing things on social media and hearing things from listeners. Careful to point out this was only speculation at the time, we shared the educated guess of many people who reasoned the school bus driver carrying 5th graders to a field trip must have attempted an illegal U-turn through a paved break in the 80 median intended for emergency vehicles only.
Listeners were mentioning that if Waterloo Village were the destination, given the direction of travel it had to mean they missed their exit. Twitter was blowing up with speculation that the collision in the left lane at the point of that median break probably indicated an attempted U-turn. Reddit offered overhead pictures of the scene, which when put up against the severe front end damage of the dump truck began painting a likely picture.
Now reports are that Department of Transportation traffic camera footage appears to show these theories could be spot on. NBC 4 is citing anonymous sources describing that footage, saying the bus may have cut across three lanes of traffic straight in front of the path of that dump truck, then braked hard for the illegal U-turn, giving the dump truck operator no room to stop. If this indeed turns out to be the truth, the school bus driver, assuming they survive any sustained injuries, needs to be in prison.
We have vehicular homicide charges given for driving drunk where people die. For drivers texting and killing someone. If this U-turn scenario plays out, there is no reason this should be chalked up to an accident. This would then be an insanely reckless, unconscionable act that took the lives of a teacher and a 5th grade student and put countless more children in the hospital with serious injuries. There was another exit several miles down the road that would have put the bus probably 20 minutes late in getting to Waterloo Village. Given the choice between being safely 20 minutes late and cutting across three lanes of traffic to attempt an illegal maneuver, only a person who deserves prison time would choose the latter.
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