At Least 8 Dead in Horrific Tour Bus Accident Near Yucaipa
A bus originating in Mexico and carrying tourists on a day trip overturned on Highway 38 north of Yucaipa Sunday evening, killing at least eight passengers and injuring several more.
The Interbus Tours coach, which had been on a day trip from Tijuana to Big Bear Lake, according to the San Bernardino Sun, was headed southbound at around 6:30 p.m. when the driver lost control and collided with two other vehicles
California Highway Patraol spokesman Mario Lopez elaborates: "The tour bus was traveling southbound on Route 38 just north of Bryant when, for reasons that are still undetermined, lost control, rear ended a Saturn sedan and then collided with a Ford pickup truck that was towing a work trailer," reports ABC7.
One passenger told reporters the accident seemed to happen "so fast" she doesn't "know how it all happened."
"The cause of the accident was unclear, but the bus driver reportedly told investigators the bus suffered brake problems as it came down the mountain," notes ABC7. Witnesses report seeing the bus headed down the hill at a high rate of speed and swerving.
So far there have been eight confirmed fatalities and about two dozen people suffered injuries ranging from minor to critical. Those injured were taken to various hospitals.
The death toll is expected to rise Monday as bodies are removed from the bus.
At the scene, civilians stepped in to help rescue people trapped in the bus. Wreckage was strewn all around the crash site, and the bus was flipped on its side.
Interbus has posted a statement on their Facebook page in Spanish, which begins (translation): "INTERBUS Tours is working to support our clients and their families that unfortunately suffered an accident coming down from the mountains of Big Bear in San Bernardino CA."
The accident is under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board, who have officials headed to the crash site today. "Officials [who have been to the accident site already] said this could very well be the worst crash scene they've ever seen in their careers," adds ABC7.