Federal investigators examining the root cause of a recent school bus accident that resulted in the death of six adults in Maryland determined there were no mechanical issues with the bus. However, they did find the driver had been – at least at one time in the not-too-distant past – taking medication for treatment of seizures.
Local police in Baltimore said in their concurrent investigation they are trying to determine whether the 67-year-old driver may have suffered some type of medical emergency on the morning of the crash. Preliminary results show that the bus rear-ended a Mustang passenger vehicle before careening into oncoming traffic and slamming into a bus operated by the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA). The school bus driver, the MTA operator, and four passengers on the MTA bus were killed in the crash. Nearly a dozen people suffered serious injuries.
A police spokesman told The Baltimore Sun that the school employee’s driving record and health history are a significant part of the investigation. The school district disclosed the driver recently passed a department-required physical exam. However, the worker had not yet offered up documentation to the state vehicle administration proving he was in good health. For this reason, he’d lost his commercial driving privileges. Certainly, these issues will become central to any wrongful death lawsuits that will be filed against the school district or the city. Although suing government entities can be a challenge, and damages are typically capped, cases like this often result in settlements before ever making it to trial.